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Blast in Afghan capital, some casualties

Written by: Staff
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KABUL, July 4 (Reuters) An explosion went off in the centre of the Afghan capital Kabul today causing several casualties, security officials said.

The blast, that appeared to have come from a car, shattered windows in the Ministry of Justice and nearby buildings, a Reuters reporter at the scene said.

A policeman at the scene said three people were killed but the Interior Ministry and foreign peacekeepers in the city could not confirm any deaths.

''There has been a blast in the city centre, we don't know what kind. I don't know about casualties,'' said Interior Ministry spokesman Yousuf Stanizai.

A spokesman for the NATO-led peacekeeping force said the cause of the blast had not been determined.

''At least a few people are injured,'' said NATO's Major Luke Knittig.

Police at the scene were trying to clear the area of onlookers, apparently fearing a second explosion, the Reuters reporter said.

Violence by Taliban insurgents has surged in Afghanistan this year to its worst level since the militants were ousted in 2001 but most of the bloodshed has been in the south and east.

Attacks in Kabul are rare.

REUTERS CH ND1408

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