At least 12 civilians have been killed and more than 100 people wounded after a car bomb targeting an Afghan police headquarters in the western province of Ghor went off on Sunday.
The attack took place in Feroz Koh, the capital of Ghor, a province that has not seen much violence compared with some other regions of the conflict-wracked country.
The ministry of interior said the car bomb detonated in front of Ghor police headquarters at about 11am local time (06:30 GMT).
“The terrorists detonated an explosives-filled car… as a result 12 civilians were killed and more than 100 people were wounded,” the interior ministry said.
Mohammad Omer Lalzad, head of a hospital in Ghor, said emergency staff were treating dozens of people, adding that the death toll will rise.
Juma Gul Yakoobi, a Ghor health official, told AFP news agency that the victims also included members of security forces.
“The explosion was very powerful,” said Aref Abir, spokesman for the Ghor governor. “There are fatalities and casualties, and people are taking them to hospitals.”
He said the blast damaged nearby government offices handling social affairs.
Peace talks between the Taliban and Afghan government began in Qatar last month but violence has continued unabated on the ground.
The talks appear to be stalled as the Taliban and the Kabul administration have struggled to establish a basic framework for negotiations.
On Friday, the Taliban agreed to suspend attacks in southern Afghanistan that had displaced thousands of residents in recent days.
It came after the US said it would halt all attacks and night raids in keeping with the peace agreement it signed with the Taliban in February.
The US had been conducting air attacks in support of Afghan forces trying to repel Taliban assaults in Helmand province, which threatened to derail efforts to end Afghanistan’s war.