afghan bomb 224.88.
(photo credit: AP)
Flames shot into the sky after a suicide car bomber attacked a US military convoy on the road to Kabul's airport Saturday, killing an American soldier and four Afghan civilians, officials said.
The bombing - on the sixth anniversary of the US-led invasion of Afghanistan - threw several vehicles onto their sides. Four Afghans were killed and 12 wounded, the Health Ministry said.
The attack targeted US troops responsible for training the Afghan military and police. Lt. Col. David Johnson, a US spokesman, said one American soldier died in the blast.
Dozens of shops were damaged.
"There was an enormous explosion. The windows of my shop shattered," said tailor Mohammad Isaq. "When I came out I saw the foreigners' vehicles on fire. I saw two injured Afghans and I ran to help them."
Saturday was the sixth anniversary of the US-led invasion to oust the Taliban for hosting al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden following the terrorist attacks on the United States of Sept. 11, 2001.
This year has been the most violent of the six-year effort. More than 5,100 people - mostly militants - have died in insurgency-related violence in 2007, according to an Associated Press count based on Afghan and Western officials.
The suicide bombing was the third major attack in Kabul in a week. On Sept. 29, a bomber targeted an Afghan army bus, killing 30 people. A similar attack on a police bus Tuesday killed 13.
Abdul Manan Farahi, Kabul's counterterrorism chief, said Kabul police in the last six months prevented 156 terror attacks, including 18 suicide bombings. He said one man from Morocco, one from Saudi Arabia and several from Pakistan were among the 18 would-be suicide attackers arrested.
Police displayed a Pakistani man in custody whom Farahi said was arrested in Kandahar before he was able to carry out a suicide bombing.
Farahi called it "unfortunate" that militants have been able to carry out three attacks in Kabul in the past week, and addressed rumors that Afghanistan's intelligence agency believes there are more suicide bombers in the city by saying that Kabul is always a target for such attacks.
Saturday's attack occurred on a tree-lined, four-lane road that leads from the US Embassy to the airport - a route frequently traveled by foreign convoys.
US military Humvees arrived at the scene shortly after the 8:15 a.m. (0315 GMT) bombing to secure the site and take away US casualties. British troops arrived soon afterward.
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