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4 Militants Killed as Kabul Standoff Ends

An Afghan policeman inspects the wreckage of a car after a Taliban attack on a guesthouse in Kabul, May 27, 2015.

A standoff at a guesthouse in Afghanistan's capital ended early Wednesday with four Taliban attackers’ dead, an Interior Ministry official said.

Heavy gunfire and explosions rocked the upscale Wazir Akbar Khan district in Kabul as Afghan security forces clashed with the attackers in the area that is home to several embassies and government buildings.

Deputy Interior Minister Mohammad Ayub Salangi said there were no civilian or military casualties, and that the assailants were armed with automatic rifles and a rocket-propelled grenade launcher.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, which comes as the militants intensify their annual spring-summer offensive.


Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani condemned the assault and praised the Afghan national security forces for quickly eliminating the terrorists and preventing any casualties.

"Our security forces once again proved that they are capable of defending our country and people against any threats and disruptive efforts," a presidential statement quoted Ghani as saying.

"The enemy is attacking civilian targets to kill women, children and innocent people because it has lost the ability to face the Afghan forces on the battlefield," he added.

Taliban fighters attacked another guesthouse earlier this month in Kabul, killing an American, a British citizen, an Italian, four Indian nationals, five Afghans and two Pakistanis.

Afghan security forces have been struggling to fend off Taliban attacks since U.S. and NATO forces formally concluded their combat mission at the end of last year.

Ayaz Gul contributed to this report from Islamabad.