35 killed, dozens injured in twin blasts near Afghan Defense Ministry – authorities

Afghan policemen stand guard at the site of a blast in Kabul, Afghanistan September 5, 2016. © Mohammad Ismail
More than 30 people have been killed and up to 103 injured in twin blasts near the Afghan Defense Ministry in the capital, Kabul, according to a Defense Ministry spokesman cited by Reuters news agency.

Earlier, a spokesman for the country’s Health Ministry put the death toll at 24 people and the number of those injured at over 90.

Several senior police officials are among the dead, according to Tolo News.

The first explosion was reported to be small, and when people gathered to find out what was happening another blast went off, according to local media reports that cite eyewitnesses.

The attack happened in a crowded area of the city near government buildings as well as a market and a main intersection, Defense Ministry spokesman Mohammad Radmanesh said, according to Reuters.

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the blasts. The terrorist group's main spokesman said that the first explosion near the Defense Ministry and other government departments was followed minutes later by a larger suicide attack.

About two weeks ago, 13 people were killed in a suicide attack on the American University in Kabul.