Afghan security officials have said that at least seven people been killed at a NATO compound in the Afghan capital Kabul, in an attack claimed by the Taliban.
Kabul provincial police chief Mohammad Ayoub Salangi said the attackers detonated a car bomb at the compound gate on Tuesday morning before attacking guards with small-arms fire.
Salangi said two truck drivers working for the foreign logistics company and five security guards were killed in the attack. Three other employees were wounded, he said.
The attack began when one of the fighters drove an explosives-laden truck into a vehicle bay in the compound north of Kabul airport, detonating an explosion that left a crater six metres deep and about 15 metres wide.
The Taliban, in an emailed statement from Zabihullah Mujahid, the group’s spokesman, claimed responsibility for the attack and said its fighters had entered what it described as “an important foreign base and logistics warehouse”.
Violence is escalating across Afghanistan as NATO-led combat troops prepare to leave by the end of 2014.
The attack happened after the interior ministry announced that armed attacks over the past one month left nearly 300 Afghan local and national policemen dead.
That figure suggests casualties among local forces are mounting now that NATO-led coalition troops have handed over responsibility for combat operations.
ISediq Sediqqi, a spokesman for the interior ministry, told reporters that 299 police were killed in the last month, and another 618 were wounded.
As Afghan forces have become more involved in security operations, they have seen a sharp rise in deaths, while casualties among the US-led military coalition have fallen as the international forces pull back to let the Afghans take the lead. The NATO coalition in June formally handed over all security operations across the country to Afghan forces.