10 Jul 2018
Afghanistan: At least 10 killed as suicide-bomber detonates in Jalalabad
A suicide attacker blew himself up near a security forces vehicle today in Afghanistan's Jalalabad city, killing at least 10 people, mostly civilians, officials said, in the latest deadly violence to rock the country.
The explosion left at least four people wounded and set a nearby petrol station alight, provincial governor spokesman Attaullah Khogyani said.
Eight civilians were among the dead, Khogyani added.
Saw a big ball of fire, people were burning: Witness
Some of the victims were brought to the hospital with severe burns, health director Najibullah Kamawal said, confirming the casualty toll.
"I saw a big ball of fire that threw people away. The people were burning," Esmatullah, who witnessed the incident, said.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the latest attack in restive Nangarhar province, which borders Pakistan.
US expresses hope
Attack comes day after Pompeo expressed hope for peace talks
Today's attack comes a day after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo expressed "hope" for peace-talks between the Afghan government and Taliban, during an unannounced visit to Kabul.
Pompeo's first trip to Afghanistan since he was sworn in as America's top diplomat in April came amid renewed optimism for peace in the war-weary country following last month's unprecedented Eid ceasefire by Taliban and Kabul.
Afghanistan witnessed 2 separate suicide bombings this month
The most recent attack in Jalalabad on July 1 saw 19 people killed and 21 wounded when a suicide bomber blew himself up in a crowd of Afghan Sikhs and Hindus.
The group had been waiting to meet Ghani when the bomber struck.
That came after two separate suicide attacks in Nangarhar during the ceasefire that were also claimed by IS.
Taliban can now see they can't win: Pompeo
"Many of the Taliban now see that they can't win on the ground militarily. That's very deeply connected to President Trump's strategy," Pompeo said, referring to Trump's much-vaunted South Asia policy announced last August.