- The Washington Times - Friday, December 11, 2015

A group of Taliban fighters stormed a guesthouse of the Spanish embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Friday, sparking an ongoing firefight between militants and security forces. 

As many as four attackers inside the building — possibly wearing suicide vests — were exchanging fire with Afghan special forces, Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman Sediq Sediqqi told NBC News. 

“We still do not know how many diplomats or guests might be holed up inside so we are conducting the clearing operation carefully as not to harm any civilians,” Mr. Sediqqi said.

The attack reportedly began when the militants detonated a car bomb at the gate of the facility, killing two guards and injuring seven others, police said. 

Two attackers were also killed and one was injured during the clearing operation, Afghan Deputy Interior Minister Mohammad Ayub Salangi tweeted later Friday.

A spokesman for the Spanish foreign ministry in Madrid originally confirmed the attack to NBC. 

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack in a tweet. 

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in tweet that “a foreign invaders’ guesthouse … came under suicide attacks this evening, heavy casualties inflicted and firefight ongoing.”

Several foreign embassies are located in the neighborhood of Shirpour, where the attack was unfolding. It also is home to several non-governmental organizations and a significant expatriate community, according to NBC. 

The siege comes just three days after the Taliban carried out an attack near the airport in Kandahar, killing 50 people.

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