Within hours of the top United Nations official in Afghanistan issuing a statement saying the Taliban had “signaled their willingness” to talk about reducing civilian casualties, militants set off a bomb that killed at least 17 civilians and wounded 39 others, many of them critically, outside the capital’s Supreme Court complex on Tuesday
The powerful explosion, felt throughout central Kabul, destroyed three buses taking court workers home from their jobs
The Taliban spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, e-mailed a statement to reporters afterward saying that a suicide bomber had carried out the attack, and that the court’s employees had been “sentenced to death” because of their “important role in cruelty, bad behavior with our countrymen, and legalizing the infidels.”
The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan's (UNAMA) recent findings show that the civilian causalities have increased by 24 percent this year.
The incident served as an example of what coalition and Afghan military officials say is the Taliban’s renewed determination to carry out nationwide attacks well after their annual spring offensive
Taliban spokesman Qari Yousef Ahmadi said in a recent statement.
“We are getting stronger and spreading our attacks because our country has been occupied, We will target foreigners and Afghans in their bases, in highways or airports, cities or rural areas. We are fighting to free our country and will continue to do so until the enemy has been defeated militarily and politically"
Insurgent attacks and land mines have taken a heavy toll on Afghan security forces this spring.
Taliban militants have targeted a NATO convoy in an area of Afghanistan, killing at least 10 people and injuring several others
Medical sources said the death toll is expected to rise as some of the injured are said to be in critical condition.
Despite the presence of thousands of US-led forces in the war-torn country
The violence has grown every passing year since the 2001 US-led invasion.