Kabul: At least 40 people have been killed and 140 wounded after a powerful explosion rocked the city centre of the Afghan capital, Kabul.
A plume of smoke was seen rising from the site of the explosion, which happened near the old Interior Ministry building.
The offices of the European Union and the High Peace Council are also nearby, along with a a number of foreign embassies and the police headquarters. Witnesses said the area was crowded at the time of the explosion.
Nasrat Rahimi, deputy spokesperson for the Interior Ministry, said the attacker was driving an ambulance and told police he was taking a patient to a nearby hospital to get through one security checkpoint. He detonated the explosives at a second check point, he said. Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, claimed responsibility for the attack
Afghan forces have struggled to combat the Taliban since the US and Nato formally ended their combat mission at the end of 2014.
They have also had to contend with a growing Isis affiliate that has carried out a number of large-scale attacks in recent years. Last week, Taliban militants killed 22 people in a luxury Kabul hotel.