Taliban insurgents are carrying out a string of attacks on foreign targets and Afghan government forces.
MOSCOW, November 29 (Sputnik) – The Taliban has continued its recent campaign of offensives with an attack Saturday on a guest house for foreign aid workers in the capital Kabul.
"We are afraid the attackers may have taken some people hostage. We are therefore acting very cautiously to avoid casualties,” Qadam Shah Shaheem, commander of the Afghan army's 111 Military Corps Kabul, told Reuters.
According to Reuters, Shaheem said that at least two militants wearing suicide vests entered the compound late on Saturday afternoon and were still inside in early evening, with the surrounding area cordoned off by security services. A Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for the attack: “A Christian proselytizing compound (also used as intelligence center) in Karta Se area, Kabul city, under attack since 4pm,” he wrote on Twitter Saturday.
In this file photo taken Monday, June 23, 2014, fighters from the Islamic State group parade in a commandeered Iraqi security forces armored vehicle down a main road at the northern city of Mosul, Iraq.
The attack is the second this week to target aid workers, following an attack Thursday on another aid agency guesthouse in which two assailants were reportedly killed by Afghan security forces. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Taliban sent a text message to claim responsibility, saying numerous bombers had attacked a guesthouse belonging to foreign workers. No civilians were killed in the attack.
On Friday it was announced that Taliban fighters had launched an attack on Afghan forces at Camp Bastion, a month after the British and American military had vacated the base in Helmand province, as part of an agreement to withdraw foreign troops from the country. Afghan officials told Reuters that five Afghan and 20 Taliban fighters had been killed, while the Taliban claimed hundreds of casualties.
The attacks are the latest in a spate of offensives by the Taliban, intent on showing their power as new President Ashraf Ghani attempts to assert government control and coalition forces withdraw most troops. The WSJ reports a Taliban spokesman told the media, “Unless the independence of Afghanistan is recognized and all foreign invaders are withdrawn from Afghanistan…they can’t feel safe in Afghanistan,” after a suicide bomb attack Thursday on a British Embassy convoy, which killed at least six and wounded 34.