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Reports: Suicide Bombers, Gunmen Attack Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel


KABUL, Afghanistan (The Blaze/AP) -- Afghan police say at least one suicide bomber has blown himself up inside the Intercontinental, a Western-style hotel in the Afghan capital.

There was no immediate word on casualties, and streets leading to the hotel are blocked. While there are conflicting stories emerging, Sky News reports the following:

At least one explosion has been heard and there are reports a number of suicide bombers have entered the building in a night-time attack.

The hotel is one of two popular with Westerners visiting Afghanistan's capital and was heavily used by foreign journalists after the war in the country began in 2001.

One local news agency is reporting that 10 people have been killed.

FOX News reports:

At least six suicide bombers have entered the Intercontinental hotel in Kabul, a U.S. official told Fox News...

"It's an attack on the Intercontinental Hotel. There are several gunmen shooting," Kabul criminal investigations chief Mohammad Zahir told AFP.

Azizullah, an Afghan police officer who uses only one name, told The Associated Press at the scene that at least one bomber entered the hotel Tuesday night and detonated a vest of explosives.

Jawid, a guest at the hotel, says the attack occurred as many people were having dinner in the hotel restaurant. He says he heard gunfire throughout the several story building.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack in a telephone call to the AP.

This is a breaking news story. Stay tuned for updates.

UPDATE:CNN.com confirms that the Taliban are responsible:

A spokesman for the Taliban, Zabiullah Mujahid, said a group of Taliban bombers was responsible for the 10 p.m. attack on the hotel, which is popular among international guests....

CNN.com also reports that this incident comes one day after NATO and other members of the international community said that they would increase security forced in the war-torn nation:

[They] decided to increase the number of security forces in the Afghan National Army and the Afghan National Police to 352,000.

The current number of Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police is about 300,000, the commander of the NATO training mission in Afghanistan and commanding general of the Combined Security Transition Command told the Atlanta Press Club.
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