Rocket attack in Kabul wounds at least 10, triggers embassy lockdowns

One rocket hit close to a mosque just outside the tightly-guarded diplomatic enclave

Reuters August 18, 2020


More than a dozen rockets struck Kabul on Tuesday, wounding at least ten people, including children, prompting some foreign embassies to order a lockdown, officials and sources in the Afghan capital said.

The identity of the attackers was unknown, though an interior ministry spokesman said two suspects had been arrested.

The attack comes at time when the United States is encouraging peace talks between the government and the Taliban, while preparing to withdraw the last US troops to end almost 19 years of war.

Smoke billowed, alarms rang out and shrapnel flew, said Reuters witnesses who heard at least four rockets landing near the Green Zone area, home to many foreign embassies and NATO headquarters.

“The warning alarm sounded two to three seconds before impact and then there was the sound of the first rocket, then, soon afterwards, another much louder one with a huge boom and shrapnel and bits of concrete fell,” one Reuters witness said.

“All diplomatic officials in embassies in the Green Zone have been moved to safe rooms in the diplomatic district until clearance orders,” a senior Western security official added.

A diplomatic source told Reuters one rocket hit close to a mosque just outside the tightly-guarded diplomatic enclave.

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