Sunday, January 21, 2018

Kabul: Afghan forces end Intercontinental Hotel siege

Kabul: Afghan forces end Intercontinental Hotel siege

Kabul: Afghan security forces say they have regained control of a luxury hotel in Kabul after it was stormed by gunmen. At least five civilians were killed and six were injured in the siege, the interior ministry said on Sunday, 21st January 2018.

All three of the attackers have been killed, a ministry spokesman said. More than 120 guests were rescued.

The gunmen burst into the Intercontinental Hotel on Saturday evening, shooting at guests and staff and detonating grenades.

Special forces battled to secure the hotel and rescue people trapped inside, a ministry spokesman said. He added that one foreigner was among those killed.

The rescued guests included 41 foreigners.

The interior ministry initially said there were four attackers, but a later statement said there were only three.

No group has said it carried out the attack, but the Taliban targeted the Intercontinental hotel in 2011.

Saturday's siege came just days after the US embassy in Kabul issued a warning about hotels in the city.

"We are aware of reports that extremist groups may be planning an attack against hotels in Kabul," theembassy wrote in a public security alert published Thursday, 18th January 2018, though it highlighted another hotel near the international airport as a possible target.

"These groups may also be targeting public gatherings/demonstrations, government facilities, transportation, markets, and places where foreigners are known to congregate."

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