Blast Rocks Kabul's Diplomatic Area

KABUL -- An Afghan army driver was killed when an anti-personnel mine in his vehicle accidentally detonated on Saturday, police said.

A huge blast was heard in the Afghan capital Saturday as a senior U.S. military official arrived for meetings to explain the firing of the previous top commander of the allied forces, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, witnesses said.

The explosion, which occurred close to Afghan's foreign ministry, was caused by an anti-personnel mine accidentally discharging in an army vehicle, a spokesman for the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said.

"Our understanding is that an anti-personnel mine was detonated while it was being carried in an ANA vehicle (Afghan National Army), an ISAF spokesman said.

Sirens could be heard heading to and from the scene.The explosion took place in the center of the city at 9:55am local time, according to witnesses.

The explosion happened as U.S. Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, arrived in Kabul late Friday on a mission to reassure Afghan leaders following the dismissal of the top commander in Kabul.

Mullen was set to meet Afghan President Hamid Karzai, the presidential office confirmed, after U.S. General Stanley McChrystal was fired for insubordination.

During his one-day visit, Mullen was also set to meet U.S. and NATO officials, the U.S. embassy in Kabul said.

The blast, if confirmed as a bombing by Taliban-linked insurgents, would be the first attack in the capital since a peace conference was held June 2.

McChrystal was removed from command Wednesday in the wake of a profile published in Rolling Stone magazine that featured strong criticism of the Obama administration's civilian leadership of the conflict.

Gen. David Petraeus was expected to be confirmed next week as McChrystal's successor.

Reuters and the AFP contributed to this story.