A suicide bomber blew himself up near Parliament offices in the Afghan capital on Tuesday, an attack that was followed immediately by a vehicle bomber in an apparently coordinated operation, officials said.
The United Arab Emirates says Tuesday's bombing in Kandahar, Afghanistan, killed five of its diplomats.
"Those responsible for these attacks must be held accountable", said Pernille Kardel, the U.N. Secretary-General's Deputy Special Representative for Afghanistan.
It also again showed the insurgents' ability to penetrate Afghan security and deal another blow to government claims that its US -aided forces are gaining the upper hand against the Taliban.
It was the first time the two men, identified as Kevin King, and Timothy Weekes, have been seen since their kidnapping outside American University in the Afghan capital in August.
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Reporting from VOA News indicates that the Taliban suicide attack occurred in the Darulaman neighborhood of Kabul, Afghanistan.
No group has so far claimed responsibility for the attack.
A suicide bomber also killed seven people and wounded nine more when he blew up a house in Lashkar Gar, the capital of Helmand province used by security staff. According to Wahidullah Majrooh, a spokesman for the Afghan Health Ministry, some 30 people were killed, a number likely to rise, with around 80 suffering various degrees of injury. The discrepancy in death tolls could not be immediately reconciled.
The attack, during rush hour on Tuesday, appeared to have targeted a bus carrying government personnel leaving a building close to the parliament.
That incident ended two hours later when all seven attackers, including a suicide auto bomber, were gunned down by Afghan forces. A local intelligence chief was killed, and a female lawmaker and two journalists were among the wounded, the official said.