Two die, several injured in Kabul auto bomb attack

Top Pakistan Security Official to Visit Afghanistan for Crucial Talks

Pakistani NSA due in Kabul for fence-mending talks

A suicide auto bomber targeting a British security company in the Afghan capital Kabul has killed two civilians and wounded three others, officials say.

"All those killed were barbers or shoeshine men". The extra security in Kabul has turned the city centre into a fortified zone of high concrete blast walls, barbed wire and police checkpoints and security forces say they have intercepted numerous attacks before they take place.

In a WhatsApp message sent to journalists Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the bomber had targeted a convoy of "foreign troops".

A SUICIDE attacker blew up a bomb-laden vehicle in Kabul today, killing at least two civilians and wounding several others, an Afghan official said.

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Earlier this week, General John Nicholson, the top USA commander in Afghanistan, said security in Kabul would be "the main effort" for worldwide powers helping Afghan defence and security forces.

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"Kabul is our main effort right now, to harden Kabul, to protect the people of Kabul and the worldwide community that are here because of the strategic impact that has and the importance to the campaign", General John Nicholson said on Wednesday.

The top Pakistani security official is visiting Kabul more than two weeks after Ghani offered unconditional talks to the Taliban in his bid to end an increasingly deadly Afghan war.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blast.

In a surprise visit to Kabul on Tuesday, US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said "elements" of the Taliban were open to peace talks with the Afghan government.

So far the Taliban has given only a muted response to President Ashraf Ghani's proposal last month, which also called for a ceasefire after which the group could become a political party.

And US data suggests the group has few reasons to negotiate right now.

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