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Blasts, gunfire as militants attack guesthouse in Kabul

Published on Mar 28, 2014 9:52 PM

KABUL (REUTERS) - Taleban gunmen stormed a Kabul guesthouse used by a US-based aid group on Friday and were holding at least four foreigners hostage, in an attack which comes eight days before Afghanistan holds a presidential election.

Kabul is already on high alert and people across the country are on edge ahead of the April 5 vote, which the Taleban have denounced as a Western-backed sham and vowed to disrupt.

A Reuters witness saw about 20 people who appeared to be non-Afghans being evacuated from the guesthouse in an upmarket residential area of Kabul, many looking frightened and shocked.

A gun battle erupted after a Taleban suicide bomber blew himself up outside the building and insurgents forced their way in. Heavy gunfire resonated in the area for hours after the initial explosion.

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