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Guest house standoff in Kabul ends, all foreigners rescued: official

English.news.cn   2014-03-29 00:31:45

KABUL, March 28 (Xinhua) -- The Kabul police rescued all foreigners trapped inside a guest house attacked by the Taliban earlier on Friday, an Interior Ministry official said, adding all five attackers were killed following the counter-attack.

"A teenage girl was killed in first blast on the street and one security guard was wounded in the incident," Deputy Interior Minister in Charges of Security Mohammad Ayoub Salangi said in his twitter account.

The guest house offers residence to staffs of the Roots of Peace, a non-governmental organization, helping the farmers improve agriculture in the war-hit country. It has been supported by a U.S. aid agency.

The attack began at around 4:00 p.m. local time after a militant exploded a car bomb, enabling four others to get into the compound.

The Taliban failed this time to cause massive civilian casualties, a witness told Xinhua. The Afghan Special Forces had worked very professionally, he said. The blast also damages several houses in the residential area in western Kabul.

The building caught fire following the exchange of fire which lasted for nearly four hours.

More than 10 foreigners were rescued by secure forces shortly after the attack.

Since early this year, the Taliban insurgent group had launched several attacks on civilian targets.

Local analysts said that Taliban has changed their tactics by avoiding direct conflicts with troops and shifting to attack on the so-called"soft targets" such as civilian, government agency buildings and infrastructure in a bid to challenge the security forces.

The militants carried out attacks in two popular restaurants in Kabul earlier this month and in January, killing 30 people. Two dozen foreigners and an Afghan journalist, along with his wife and two children, were killed in the attacks.

The attacks came as the country is preparing for the presidential and provincial councils general elections slated for April 5. The Afghan security forces are taking over security from more than 52,000-strong NATO-led foreign troops who are set to leave the country by the year end.

Editor: Mu Xuequan
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