Blast Destroys School In Northern Afghanistan; No Deaths Reported

A blast destroyed a school in Afghanistan's northern Kunduz Province on July 15, Afghan officials said.

Three people, including the school's gatekeeper, were injured in the blast in Khoja Mashhad, a school in the city of Kunduz, Mahfozullah Akbari, a spokesman for the northern police zone, told the media.

According to a provincial council member, Sayed Assadullah Sadat, four to five people in neighboring houses were injured by flying glass shards. However, there were no students present that early in the morning.

It was not clear who was responsible for the blast.

Afghan officials such as Mahfozullah Akbari blamed it on a U.S. air strike.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed that "invader planes" had bombed a school in Kunduz.

However, U.S. forces spokesman William Salvin told RFE/RL that allegations of U.S. air strikes on a school in Kunduz province are "false."

Salvin said U.S. forces did launch air strikes in Kunduz, but their targets were Taliban positions, and voiced "confidence" that the strikes had been succsessful. He said Afghan officials told him the fire and explosion at the school were caused by a kitchen fire.

With additional reporting by dpa