2 killed, 7 injured in blast near NATO base in E. Afghanistan
Two local guards were killed and seven people were injured on Thursday when a car bomb went off near a NATO base in Gardez, the provincial capital of eastern Paktia province, an official said.
"I do confirm two Afghan security guards were killed in a car bomb blast near the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) run by NATO troops in Gardez city," spokesman for the provincial government, Rohullah Samoon told Xinhua.
A civilian-military unit of America -- the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) -- is based in Gardez to help strengthen security and reconstruction process in the eastern Paktia province.
According to Samoon, seven Afghan workers with the Gardez PRT, who were waiting near the entrance gate of the base to access, were also injured in the blast that occurred at around 8:00 a.m. ( GMT 0330) Thursday in Gardez city, some 100 km south of capital city of Kabul.
However, Samoon failed to say whether any NATO troops were injured in the incident.
Security personnel have cordoned off the area in precautionary measures and the injured people have been shifted to a nearby hospital.
No group claimed responsibility for the attack, but Taliban suspects normally claim responsibility for such attacks.
The Taliban-led insurgency has been rampant since the militant group announced to launch a spring offensive from May 1 against Afghan and NATO-led troops stationed in Afghanistan.
The Taliban outfit has also warned the civilians to stay away from official gatherings, military convoys and centers as the militants would attack officials and security personnel as legitimate targets.
As of Thursday Aug. 18, a total of 400 NATO troops have been killed in Afghanistan since the beginning of this year.