Nov 29, 2018 08:28 Asia/Tehran

At least 10 people were killed and 19 wounded in an attack on a security contractor's compound in Afghanistan's capital of Kabul.

Iran Press/ Asia: Interior Ministry spokesman Najib Danish said an unknown number of gunmen entered the compound after a car bomb exploded near the facility, triggering a battle with Afghan security forces, APTN reported.

The interior ministry and police both said the blast had been a car bomb targeting a compound which houses G4S, a private British security company, in east Kabul.

“We can confirm that there has been an incident at one of our locations in Kabul. The situation is ongoing and we are coordinating with the Afghan authorities to bring it to a conclusion,” a G4S spokesman told.

Afghan authorities also said they were conducting a clearing operation at the site.

“Ten dead, 19 wounded have been evacuated from site,” health ministry spokesman Wahid Majroh told, without giving the victims’ nationalities.

Interior ministry deputy spokesman Nasrat Rahimi confirmed the toll but warned it could yet change.

Earlier, sources had said the blast was followed by gunfire. Rahimi said no gunfire had been heard for some time.

The attack came just hours after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani announced the formation of a team for prospective peace talks with the Taliban, as the United Nations renewed calls for direct negotiations between Kabul and the militants.

Earlier on November 28, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that Iran supports the peace initiatives in Afghanistan under the guidance of the country’s government.

He also said, there is national, regional and global consensus that there is no military solution in Afghanistan, and the time has come for a national reconciliation and inclusive political solution in Afghanistan, owned and led by the Afghan government and people, Iran Press reported. 

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Furthermore; Russia hosted a conference on Afghanistan’s peace on November 9 as an attempt to bring the Taliban and the Afghan government closer to direct peace talks.

However, the Kabul government did not send a delegation. Instead, members of the High Peace Council (HPC), a government-appointed body responsible for reconciliation efforts with the Taliban, attended the event, where they repeated Afghan President Ashraf Ghani's offer of peace talks without pre-conditions.

According to the delegations from the Taliban and HPC, the meeting ended without the sides agreeing on a path to direct dialogue. 203/103 


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