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Suicide Car Bomb In Kabul Kills 12, Including 3 American Contractors

Afghan security forces and British soldiers inspect the site of a suicide attack in the heart of Kabul, Afghanistan, on Saturday. Three American civilian contractors are reportedly among the dead.

A suicide car bomb targeting a convoy in the Afghan capital has killed a dozen people, including three American contractors, NATO say. Scores of others were wounded.

The attack, which wounded 66 people, took place in Kabul's Macrorayan neighborhood, what The Associated Press describes as "a Soviet-built housing estate lined with shops, hospitals and schools."

The Taliban denied responsibility, although the militia has been responsible for an upsurge in attacks in recent weeks in the capital. The Taliban often don't claim responsibility for attacks that kill or maim large numbers of Afghan civilians, the AP says.

The Taliban denied carrying out the attack. However, they have stepped up their assaults on Afghan security forces since U.S. and NATO troops ended their combat mission in the country last year.

The AP reports:

"The attack struck near the private Shinozada hospital, the sound of the powerful blast roaring throughout the capital. Ambulances and Afghan security forces quickly surrounded the blast site, blocking access off from about 1 kilometer (half a mile) away. ...

"At least one armored vehicle in the convoy had been destroyed by the blast. It wasn't clear how many armored cars were in the convoy, though it is at least two, often three because of heightened security concerns in the capital."

The Guardian writes: "The bomb damaged a number of buildings, with the Shinozada private hospital worst hit. A religious school was also severely damaged, as was a school vehicle that was passing by. At least one woman and two children were among those killed in the attack, said Najib Danish of the interior ministry."

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