Cieee... Afghan Bertemu Priyanka Chopra

KONFRONTASI-Penyanyi Afgan baru-baru ini bertemu penyanyi kenamaan Nick Jonas dan Priyanka Chopra. Momen langka itu diabadikan Afgan lewat sebuah foto yang di-unggah ke akun Instagram.

Penyanyi berdarah Minang itu mengatakan, dirinya adalah penggemar Nick Jonas. Beruntung saat acara di Singapura, idolanya itu juga tengah bersama Priyanka Chopra.

Sewage tanker bomb kills at least 80, wounds hundreds in Afghan capital

KONFRONTASI-A powerful bomb hidden in a sewage tanker exploded in the morning rush hour in the center of the Afghan capital on Wednesday, police said, killing at least 80 people, wounding hundreds and damaging embassy buildings.

The victims appeared mainly to have been Afghan civilians.

The bomb, one of the deadliest in Kabul and coming at the start of the holy month of Ramadan, exploded close to the fortified entrance to the German embassy, wounding some staff, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said. Pictures showed the embassy building with its windows ripped out.

One Afghan security guard was killed and others were likely among the dead, Gabriel said. A spokeswoman for the German foreign ministry said the bomber's target was unknown.

"Such attacks do not change our resolve in continuing to support the Afghan government in the stabilization of the country," Gabriel said.

Basir Mujahid, a spokesman for city police, said the explosives were hidden in a sewage truck. He also suggested that the German embassy might not have been the target of the blast, which sent towering clouds of black smoke into the sky near the presidential palace.

"There are several other important compounds and offices near there too," he told Reuters.

The blast, which shattered windows and blew doors off their hinges in houses hundreds of meters away, was unusually strong.

No group had claimed responsibility by late Wednesday afternoon.

The Taliban, seeking to reimpose Islamic rule after their 2001 ouster by U.S.-led forces, denied responsibility and said they condemned attacks that have no legitimate target and killed civilians.

Islamic State, a smaller militant group in Afghanistan seeking to project its claim to a global Islamic caliphate beyond its Middle East base, has previously claimed responsibility for high-profile attacks in Kabul, including one on a military hospital in March that killed more than 50 people.

The NATO-led Resolute Support (RS) mission in Kabul said Afghan security forces prevented the vehicle carrying the bomb from entering the heavily protected Green Zone that houses many foreign embassies as well as its headquarters, also suggesting it may not have reached its intended target.

A public health official said at least 80 people had been killed and more than 350 wounded.

Germany will cease flights deporting rejected asylum seekers to Afghanistan in the next few days, a German official confirmed. Germany began carrying out group deportations of Afghans in December, seeking to show it is tackling an influx of migrants by getting rid of those who do not qualify as refugees.

The French, Turkish and Chinese embassies were among those damaged, the three countries said, adding there were no immediate signs of injuries among their diplomats. The BBC said one of its drivers, an Afghan, was killed driving journalists to work. Four journalists were wounded and treated in hospital.

Switzerland said the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation had several windows broken but the staff were safe.

Video shot at the scene showed burning debris, crumbled walls and buildings, and destroyed cars, many with dead or injured people inside. Blood streamed down the faces of walking wounded.

Begini Kesan Raisa Duet Bareng Afghan

KONFRONTASI-Raisa merasa senang dapat terlibat dalam album terbaru temannya sesama penyanyi, Afgan.

"Ini kan awal-awal Afgan menulis lagu," kata Raisa saat peluncuran album Afgan "Sides" di Jakarta, Rabu (31/8).

Raisa dan Afgan menulis lagu "Percayalah" pada 2013 lalu dan kini menjadi lagu untuk film "London Love Story".

Raisa terkesan dengan lagu ini, selain karena Afgan adalah teman lamanya, ia baru pertama kali berduet dalam rekaman.

Ia dan Afgan pernah beberapa kali bernyanyi bersama saat tampil di panggung.

Afghan Taliban: Haibatullah Akhunzada is new leader

KONFRONTASI-An Afghan Taliban spokesman has confirmed the death of Mullah Akhtar Mansoor, the armed group's leader, in a US drone strike and announced the appointment of Haibatullah Akhunzada as his successor.

Agencies on Wednesday quoted the Taliban spokesman as saying that Sirajuddin Haqqani and Mullah Yaqoob have been appointed the group's new deputy leaders.

The announcement followed confirmation on Monday by President Barack Obama that Mansoor was killed in a US drone strike in Pakistan's Balochistan province.

Ciee... Afghan-Raisa Malu-malu Beradegan Mesra

KONFRONTASI-Baik Afgan maupun Raisa sama-sama mengaku sempat canggung saat pertama kali sama-sama terlibat dalam satu video klip dan beradegan mesra di sana. Dalam video klip "Percayalah" yang resmi dirilis Senin ini, Afgan dan Raisa dikisahkan sebagai sepasang anak manusia yang saling mencintai sejak SMA. Takdir mempertemukan mereka kembali saat keduanya sama-sama menggeluti profesi yang sama, sebagai penyanyi. "Ada akwardnya, kayak harus mesra-mesraan. Kita harus berkali-kali take, karena masih kaku," kata Afgan di Jakarta, Senin.

Taliban Ambush Kills 20 Police Officers

KONFRONTASI-A firefight has been taking place between Taliban fighters and Afghan security forces after the militants ambushed Helmand checkpoints killing 20 police officers.

The militants launched a string of night-time attacks on checkpoints in the volatile province in the south of Afghanistan, where the Taliban enjoys a stronghold.

Reinforcements have been sent from other regions to help regain control of the area of the Musa Qala district.

NATO soldier killed in firefight with Afghan troops

KONFRONTASI-One NATO coalition soldier was killed in a firefight that broke out between NATO and Afghan troops in east Afghanistan, the coalition said in a statement.

The NATO statement did not mention the nationality of the dead soldier, but Afghan police sources said the soldiers involved in the incident were American.

The shooting took place after a meeting between a senior U.S. diplomat and a provincial governor.[mr/reuters]

NATO holds ceremony closing Afghan mission

KONFRONTASI-NATO has held a ceremony in Kabul formally ending its war in Afghanistan, officials said, after 13 years of conflict and gradual troop withdrawals that have left the country in the grip of worsening conflicts with armed groups.

The event was carried out on Sunday in secret due to the threat of Taliban strikes in the Afghan capital, which has been hit by repeated suicide bombings and gun attacks over recent years.

On January 1, the US-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) combat mission will be replaced by a NATO "training and support" mission.

Afghan president defiant in face of attacks

KONFRONTASI-Defying frequent attacks by armed groups across his country, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has given a speech following a wave of recent Taliban activity, pledging that Afghanistan "will never surrender".

In a televised speech on Sunday, Ghani called on all religious, political and social leaders to condemn the violence. At one point, he even shouted: "Enough!"

Ghani's words come just two weeks before the withdrawal from Afghanistan of most international combat troops, 13 years after the US-led invasion following the September 11 attacks.