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Six Killed in Attack on Luxury Hotel in Afghan Capital


Four suspected Taliban militants wearing suicide vests and armed with grenades and rifles attacked a heavily-guarded luxury hotel in the Afghan capital, Kabul Monday, killing at least six people.

An Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman said one American national and a Norwegian journalist are among the dead along with several hotel security guards. Six other people were wounded in the gun and bomb attack.

The spokesman said one attacker blew himself up, while the others threw grenades and fired guns. Another attacker was shot dead by hotel guards.

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack, which came as Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere was preparing for a meeting at the Serena Hotel. He was unharmed.

Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg called the attack an "unacceptable assault on innocent civilians" and said it will not deter his country from its work in Afghanistan.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon suggested that Stoere was the target of the attack, which he said demonstrates the need for taking measures against terrorism.

Militant attacks in Afghanistan usually take place in the restive southern provinces of Helmand and Kandahar, where Taliban insurgents are active. But there have been an increasing number of attacks in the capital over the past year.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.