The Taliban launched a major assault Wednesday on the Afghan capital of Kabul. A suicide car bomber and Taliban terrorists disguised in burqas attacked a compound housing hundreds of foreigners in Kabul.
At least seven people were killed and 17 wounded. Authorities say most of the wounded were Afghan children on their way to school. NATO said all the attackers were killed.
Wednesday's attack came hours after President Obama's surprise trip to the country to mark the one-year anniversary of the death of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.
Obama landed at Bagram Air Field Tuesday under the cover of darkness.
The president, who credits his administration's war strategy for turning the tide in the country, declared that after decade of war the end is near.
"My fellow Americans, we have traveled through more than a decade under the dark cloud of war," he said. "Yet here, in the pre-dawn darkness of Afghanistan we can see the light of a new day on the horizon."
Obama's surprise visit included a meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.
The two leaders signed an agreement on the U.S. role in Afghanistan. After 2014, Afghan troops are expected to take control of their nation's security. At that point, the main mission will be training Afghan troops and working counter-terrorism.
The pact does not, however, detail any specific troop levels or funding after that point.
Currently, about 88,000 U.S. forces are deployed in Afghanistan. The troops who were part of the 2010 surge are expected home in September and the remaining troops by the end of 2014.
After signing the agreement, the president flew back to Bagram to encourage the troops.
"We're going to make sure that the gains, the hard-fought gains that have been made are preserved," Obama vowed. "But the reason we'll be able to do that is because of you. The reason that the Afghans have an opportunity for a new tomorrow is because of you."
But Wednesday's attack highlights the Taliban's continued ability to strike in the heavily guarded capital regardless of the security level.