Afghan officials say at least 90 people have been killed and some 150 others wounded in a massive suicide car bomb attack that targeted a crowded area in central Kabul.
Health Ministry spokesman, Wahidullah Majrooh, said the toll was likely to rise as the victims were still being brought in to hospitals across the city.
Kabul deputy police chief, Haqnawaz Haqyar, said that victims were still being brought in to hospitals across the city.
Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, claimed that the militant group was behind the attack.
According to the Interior Ministry the attacker used an ambulance to pass through checkpoints.
“He passed through the first checkpoint saying he was taking a patient to the [nearby] Jumhuryat hospital and at the second checkpoint he was recognized and blew his explosive-laden car," Interior Ministry deputy spokesman Nasrat Rahimi told the AFP news agency.
Images posted on social media show a plume of grey smoke rising from the blast area. Eyewitnesses say that buildings hundreds of meters away were shaken by the force of the explosion.
The attack comes a week after an assault on the Intercontinental Hotel in the city that killed at least 25 people.
Elsewhere in Afghanistan, a suicide car bomber targeted security forces in the southern province of Helmand, wounding at least six people on January 27, local officials said.
Provincial government spokesman Omar Zwak said that the suicide bomber tried to enter the Qari Posta security checkpoint in the Nad Ali district.
The attacker was spotted by security forces who opened fire on him, but he still managed to detonate his explosives, Zwak said.
The Taliban also claimed responsibility for that attack.
With reporting by dpa AFP, tolonews.com, Reuters, AP