A powerful explosion occurred in Afghanistan's capital of Kabul on Tuesday, a RIA Novosti correspondent has reported.
According to Kabul police officials, an explosive device was detonated in the fashionable northeast part of the capital where most western embassies are located.
According to preliminary reports, at least five people have been killed and another 10 injured in the incident.
Authorities said the explosion is believed to be a terrorist act directed at Afghanistan's Interior Ministry, which had planned a three-day international conference on the fight against corruption. Foreign experts and diplomats, as well as Afghan authorities, including President Hamid Karzai, were planning to speak at the conference.
The blast comes at a time when the first of a total of 30,000 extra U.S. soldiers are to be deployed to Afghanistan this week, according to the head of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen.
He also said on Monday that "the insurgency has grown more violent, more pervasive, more sophisticated."
Mullen also welcomed NATO's decision to send 7,000 additional troops to Afghanistan.
KABUL, December 15 (RIA Novosti)