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Kabul terror attack: Fight over, all attackers killed

Afghanistan,Terrorism, Mon, 16 Apr 2012 IANS

Kabul, April 16 (IANS) The synchronised terror attack launched by the Taliban in Kabul is over and all attackers have been killed following an overnight operation that saw a string of explosions Monday morning, authorities said.


Taliban militants have been brought under control and all the attackers have been killed after hours of fierce offensive, Kabul police said in a statement released here Monday. There was still no official estimate of how many people were killed.


The attacks, which included suicide bombings and heavy gunfire, began at 1.35 p.m. Sunday and was over at 7.30 a.m. Monday, reported Xinhua.


On Sunday, the Taliban launched a brazen assault in Kabul and elsewhere in the country, targeting the embassies of the US and Germany, the Afghanistan parliament, the NATO headquarters and an airbase used by the American troops.


"The last of militants were overrun in Darul Aman area (of Kabul) at 7.30 a.m. today (Monday) and all the attackers have been killed," the police statement said.


The statement, however, did not reveal the exact number of the attackers who were killed. It simply said all the attackers have been killed.


Though there was no clarity about how many people were killed in Kabul, the interior ministry said Afghan security forces backed by NATO-led troops have killed 47 Taliban militants and injured 31 over the past 24 hours.


"The Afghan National Police in harmony with the National Army and backed by the NATO-led Coalition Forces launched 11 joint operations in several provinces including Kabul over the past 24 hours during which 47 armed insurgents were killed, 31 wounded and 21 were arrested," a statement added.


However, it did not say if security forces suffered any casualties.


Sunday's attack on the Afghanistan capital was the first major assault in more than six months. The heavily guarded area of Kabul, where the attacks have been carried out, is frequented by foreigners and is rarely the scene of violence.


As the security forces fought the heavily-armed Taliban rebels, a string of explosions rocked Kabul early Monday.


The explosions persisted for some time. They followed gunfire that lasted well into Sunday night in an area that houses government offices and embassies, reported CNN.


Interior Ministry spokesperson Sediq Seddiqi stressed that the Taliban guerrillas "have no choice except surrendering or to be killed by the Afghan forces".


The Taliban said Sunday's attacks marked the start of a "spring offensive".


The last attack on Kabul of this scale was witnessed in September 2011 when heavily armed insurgents took over an unfinished high-rise building and opened fire on the US embassy and NATO headquarters. That attack left 14 Afghans dead.


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