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At least 4 killed as explosion hits largest US base in Afghanistan

Early morning blast at Bagram Airfield also injured at least 14, says NATO; Taliban claims responsibility

Croatian soldiers from the NATO coalition walk past a crater from a bomb blast as they inspect the site of an attack targeting the German consulate in Mazar-i-Sharif, Afghanistan on November 11, 2016. (AFP/Farshad Usyan)
Croatian soldiers from the NATO coalition walk past a crater from a bomb blast as they inspect the site of an attack targeting the German consulate in Mazar-i-Sharif, Afghanistan on November 11, 2016. (AFP/Farshad Usyan)

KABUL, Afghanistan — At least four people were killed and 14 others wounded in an explosion that struck the largest US military base in Afghanistan early Saturday, NATO said, without specifying the victims’ nationalities.

“An explosive device was detonated on Bagram Airfield resulting in multiple casualties. Response teams at Bagram continue to treat the wounded and investigate the incident,” the military coalition said in a statement.

“Our Force Protection and medical teams are responding to the situation,” it added, without offering any other details.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, which they said was carried out by a suicide bomber inside the base. Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the insurgent group, said the attack had been planned for four months.

The Taliban regularly fire rockets at Bagram from outside its perimeter.

The explosion underscores a worsening security situation nearly two years after NATO formally ended its combat operations in Afghanistan.

Bagram Airfield, close to Kabul, has frequently come under attack by Taliban insurgents.

Last December, a motorcycle-riding Taliban suicide bomber killed six US soldiers near Afghanistan’s largest US military base.

It was one of the deadliest attacks on foreign troops in the country in 2015.

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