U.S. embassy reacts to news of 80 dead, scores injured in Kabul truck bombing
KABUL- The U.S. Embassy in Kabul and the NATO mission have condemned the massive bombing that killed 80 people near the German Embassy in the Afghan capital.
The explosion took place at the peak of Kabul's rush hour when roads are packed with worktime commuters. It appeared to have gone off close to a busy intersection in the Wazir Akbar Khan district — a highly secure area of the capital that is home to many embassies, diplomatic missions, the Presidential Palace and the Foreign Ministry.
America's top diplomat to Kabul, Special Chargé d'Affaires Hugo Llorens said Wednesday's "horrific and shameful attack demonstrates these terrorists' complete disregard for human life and their nihilistic opposition to the dream of a peaceful future for Afghanistan."
Germany's Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel says the explosion in Kabul has wounded employees of the German Embassy and killed an Afghan security guard outside the building.
Llorens offered his "deepest condolences to the families of all those killed and hope for the speedy recovery of the injured."
The Kabul headquarters of NATO's mission to Afghanistan also denounced the car bombing which the alliance said went off near Zambaq Square. The U.S. Embassy is not located there but in another part of the city, about a kilometer (half mile) away.
The NATO statement praised "the courage of Afghan Security Forces, especially the police and first responders. Attacks such as these only serve to strengthen our commitment to our Afghan partners as they seek a peaceful, stable future for their country."
Japan's Foreign Ministry says two of its embassy employees, both Japanese nationals, were slightly injured in the bombing in Kabul earlier in the day.
The ministry says the injured were inside the embassy complex, located near the site of Wednesday's bombing. It says embassy officials also reported some minor damage to the building, such as broken windows but that there are no other reports of injuries or damage involving Japanese nationals in Kabul.
Turkey's Foreign Ministry says Turkish Embassy buildings were damaged in the explosion but that no embassy employees were harmed The ministry condemned the attack and said Turkey would continue to stand by Afghanistan in the fight against terrorism.
India reported "some damage to windows" at the Indian Embassy building, located next to the German, Iranian and British embassies.
The BBC says a driver for the broadcaster was killed and four of its journalists were injured in the bombing.
China's foreign ministry says its embassy building in Kabul has been partly damaged.