News ID: 110058
Publish Date : 12 December 2022 - 22:15

Kabul Hotel Popular With Chinese Nationals Hit in Deadly Attack

KABUL (Al Jazeera/AP) – At least three attackers have been killed by Afghanistan’s security forces after they opened fire at a Kabul hotel popular with Chinese nationals, says a spokesman for the ruling Taliban.
The unidentified armed men opened fire inside the multi-storey Kabul Longan Hotel in central Kabul on Monday, with witnesses reporting multiple blasts and several bursts of gunfire.
The attack has now ended and no foreigners were killed, although two of them were injured while trying to escape the attack by jumping from the hotel balcony, spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said.
While the firing was continuing inside the hotel, a fire broke out on one of its floors, sources told the Reuters news agency.
A video posted on Twitter by a journalist in Kabul, verified by Reuters, showed smoke billowing out of the building.
The attack took place around 2:30pm local time (10:00 GMT) when armed men targeted the hotel where “common people were staying”, Kabul police spokesman Khalid Zadran said, adding that forces were trying to secure the area.
Residents of the area said the attack was carried out at a building where Chinese and other foreigners usually stay. The shooting continued after they heard a powerful explosion, they said.
The attack came a day after China’s ambassador met the Afghan deputy foreign minister to discuss security-related matters and sought more attention on the security of its embassy.
China’s state-run Xinhua news agency reported that the attack took place near a Chinese guesthouse and that its embassy in Kabul was closely monitoring the situation.
China, which shares a rugged 76-km (47-mile) border with Afghanistan, has not officially recognized the Taliban government but is one of the few countries to maintain a diplomatic presence there.
Several bombing and shooting attacks have taken place in Afghanistan in recent months, some of which have been claimed by the Daesh terrorist group.
The Taliban, who seized power after United States-led foreign forces withdrew in August 2021, have said they are focused on securing the country.
Meanwhile on Sunday, deadly cross-border shelling by Afghan Taliban forces at a Pakistani border town killed seven people, Pakistan’s military said, as relations continue to sour between the two neighboring countries.
The violence hitting Chaman in southwestern Pakistan follows a series of deadly incidents and attacks that have skyrocketed tensions between Islamabad and Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers. Chaman is the main border crossing for trade between the countries.
The crossing was reopened on Monday morning, authorities said.
The Pakistani army’s media wing initially said six died in Sunday’s shelling, but the death toll later rose to seven. Sixteen others were wounded, the army said, blaming the casualties on the “unprovoked and indiscriminate fire” of heavy weapons by Afghan forces on civilians.