The Taliban inaugurated 2016 with a suicide bombing in Kabul, killing two person and wounding 15, Agence France-Press reports. The bombing targeted Le Jardin, an Afghan-owned French restaurant popular with foreigners.
“We can confirm a suicide car bomb attack on Le Jardin,” Kabul Criminal Investigation Department head Fraidoon Obaidi told AFP. “We are busy extinguishing the fire at the scene…two Afghans have been killed and 15 others wounded.”
According to the Associated Press, a Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, confirmed that it was a Taliban suicide bomber that had targeted the restaurant. An Interior Ministry spokesman, Sediq Sediqqi, said that Afghan security forces were “looking for any other possible terrorist in the area.”
The latest attack comes just days after Pakistan’s powerful army chief, Gen Raheel Sharif, visited Kabul to try to prepare the ground for fresh peace talks with the resurgent Taliban. Both sides agreed to hold a first round of dialogue between Afghanistan, Pakistan, US and China on 11 January to lay out a roadmap for peace, officials in Kabul said.
Pakistan—the Taliban’s historic backers—hosted a first round of talks in July but the negotiations stalled when the insurgents belatedly confirmed the death of their longtime leader, Mullah Omar.