KABUL, Afghanistan – A suicide car bomber targeted a NATO convoy in Kabul today, wounding 10 civilians passing nearby, officials said.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates is scheduled to meet with President Hamid Karzai and other officials for talks today.
The bomber struck a two-vehicle convoy belonging to NATO’s International Security Assistance Force near the city’s airport, Interior Ministry spokesman Zemeri Bashary said.
Ten civilians who were riding in a minibus near the blast were wounded, said Ghulam Rasool, a police officer.
There were no casualties in the NATO convoy, said Lt. Col. Thomas Dillschneider, an ISAF spokesman.
The attacker’s car was destroyed and three private vehicles, including the minibus, also were damaged.
Militants have launched more than 130 suicide attacks this year – a record number. At least 6,200 people have died in insurgency-related violence in 2007, also a record, according to an Associated Press tally of figures from Afghan and Western officials.
Suicide attacks frequently target international and Afghan security forces, but most of the casualties are civilian passers-by.
On Monday, another suicide bomber blew himself up next to a police patrol in southwestern Nimroz province, killing two police officers and two civilians, said provincial governor Ghulam Dastagir.