Sixteen people were killed in Afghanistan’s Kandahar city on Tuesday when a vehicle packed with explosives was detonated before those could be defused, reported TOLO News. Among those killed, four were security forces personnel.
Daud Ahmadi, the spokesperson for the governor of Kandahar province, said 38 people, including five children and six members of the security forces, were injured in the explosion, reported AP.
The police and intelligence officers had cleared the area around a bus station where the van was found, said Ahmadi, according to AFP. “As the security forces were trying to defuse the [explosives in the] van, it detonated,” said police spokesperson Mohammad Qasim Azad.
Ahmadi said security forces also found a large container of explosives, rocket-propelled grenades, suicide vests and ammunition near the site. An unidentified security official told AFP that the “terrorists planned to conduct a big attack” in Kandahar at the end of Ramzan.
President Ashraf Ghani praised the bravery of the intelligence and security forces for attempting to foil the bombing.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack yet. On Monday, 14 police personnel were killed after the Taliban attacked security forces in eastern Afghanistan’s Ghazni province.