Kabul - At least seven people were killed after a suicide bomber blew up his explosive vest near the entrance of a government ministry in Afghanistan's capital, Kabul, on Sunday, an official said.
More than 15 others were injured in the incident that took place around 4:30 pm (1200 GMT) as the staff of the Rural Rehabilitation Ministry were leaving at the end of the day, said Hashmat Stanakzai, a spokesman for Kabul police.
The victims included civilians and Afghan security force members, Stanakzai said.
Stanakzai added that a foreign forces convoy was also crossing the area and one of their vehicles was damaged. He said there were no casualties among those forces.
"So far it is unclear what or who the target of the suicide bomber was," Stanakzai said.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
This is the second time the ministry has been the scene of a bombing in just over a month.
On June 11, a suicide bombing in front of the same ministry claimed by Islamic State left 13 people dead and 25 others injured.
Sunday's bombing is the 13th large-scale attack since January in Kabul, leaving at least 316 dead and nearly 580 others injured.
A UN report released Sunday that covered January 1 to June 30 said that civilian deaths due to suicide bombings and improvised explosive devices have spiked 22 per cent compared to the same period last year.
According to the UN Assistance Mission (UNAMA) report, the leading cause of civilian casualties in the country were bombs, which left 427 civilians dead and 986 injured. Islamic State was behind 52 per cent of the deadly suicide bombings and complex attacks, the report said.
The UN count is considered a conservative estimate as it needs at least three independent sources to officially register a case.
* Receive IOL's top stories via Whatsapp by sending your name to 0745573535.DPA