Blast near US Embassy in Kabul marks early hours of 9/11 anniversary

A large explosion went off in the vicinity of the US Embassy in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, moments after midnight on the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, footage from the scene shows.

A column of smoke was captured in photos early Wednesday morning, thought to be near the US Embassy in Kabul’s “exclusion zone.” The Afghan Defense Ministry said a rocket hit an “external wall” near its headquarters, but confirmed no casualties.

A US Embassy official has confirmed the blast to PBS, but had no further details. Some reports said ambulance sirens could be heard in the area around the embassy.

Following a string of bombings in Kabul and elsewhere in Afghanistan over the last week, US President Donald Trump called off negotiations with the Taliban that had been ongoing for over a year, insisting the talks were “dead.”

The militant group responded harshly to the abrupt about-face, vowing to wage “jihad” against the United States and renew efforts to capture new territory in Afghanistan.