At least 21 people, including six journalists, have been killed and dozens wounded after two explosions hit Kabul, according to Afghan health officials.
The blasts went off during rush hour on Monday morning in the Shash Darak area of the Afghan capital.
In the first explosion, a suicide bomber detonated himself close to the National Directorate of Security (NDS), the main Afghan intelligence agency, TOLO News quoted an interior ministry spokesman as saying.
In another explosion that followed 20 minutes later, a second suicide bomber targeted emergency medical workers and journalists who had arrived at the scene, Al Jazeera’s Jennifer Glasse, reporting from Kabul, said.
Glasse said six journalists who rushed to cover the aftermath of the first explosion were killed in the second blast.
A spokesperson for the Afghan health ministry said the attacks killed at least 21 people and wounded 27 others.
AFP news agency reported that its chief photographer in Kabul, Shah Marai, was among the fatalities.
An Al Jazeera photographer was also injured in the incident.
#UPDATE Agence France-Presse’s chief photographer in Kabul, Shah Marai, has been killed.
He died in a blast that was targeting a group of journalists who had rushed to the scene of a suicide attack in the Afghan capital pic.twitter.com/rOa4rg24x9
— AFP news agency (@AFP) April 30, 2018
TOLO News also reported that two other journalists were wounded in the second blast.
There were fears that the death toll could rise.
“It’s a very grim morning here,” Al Jazeera’s Glasse said describing the situation in the Afghan capital.
She added that there are many fortified streets near the site of the attack.
“There’s a lot of security in that area – it’s not far from NATO headquarters – and security has been beefed up around the Afghan capital, but clearly they haven’t been able to stop these kind of attacks.”
The explosions on Monday come just a week after a blast hit a voter registration centre in Kabul, killing at least 57 people and wounding more than a hundred others.
Attacks have multiplied in recent days in advance of the long-delayed parliamentary and district council elections scheduled for October 20 this year.
“The series of attacks here in Kabul have made the Afghan capital most dangerous place in Afghanistan to be,” Al Jazeera’s Glasse said.
|The second blast targeted emergency workers and journalists who arrived at the scene [AP]|