Taliban lays siege to 200 rooms hotel

Monitoring Desk
Monday - January 22, 2018
KABUL (Afghanistan): As part of operation Mansouri, a Taliban offensive against United States (US) led militia, a suicide attack, in the Afghan capital, beginning on Saturday night ended Sunday morning, killing participants of a meeting between US militia and local officials, by storming every possible room, out of 200, at the Intercontinental hotel; a Taliban news affiliate, Al-Emarah news, reported.

According to detail, it said four Taliban suicide attackers, Bilal Ayubi and Khalil from Kandahar, Bashar from Faryab and Obaid from Ghour province, armed with heavy and light arms stormed the heavily-guarded Intercontinental hotel, located in the Bagh-e-Bala area of Kabul city, late on Saturday night, setting off a gun battle with security forces that extended into Sunday morning.

They went from room to room to target the foreign militia as well the attendees of the meeting held between the American militia and the local officials.

Last night’s operation lasted for about 14 hours in which a large number of the foreign militia and local Afghan personnel were killed.

The operation was originally planned to be carried out on Friday night but was delayed due to a crowd of civilians and a wedding ceremony taking place that night.

The attack was conducted on Saturday night as the number of the civilians was nominal due to a meeting between US militia and local officials, Al-Emarah news report concluded.

According to official reports, the siege lasted for well over 14 hours and that there were at least 6 assailants, at least 14 foreigners and four locals were killed, while 16 are wounded including 6 security personnel.

According to Afghan media, at least 43 casualties have been reported which includes both the foreigners and local Afghans.

Pakistani foreign office (FO), in a statement on Sunday, condoled, “Pakistan strongly condemns the brutal terrorist attack at the Inter-Continental hotel in Kabul last evening” grieving “We express deep grief and sorrow at the loss of precious human lives and the injuring of many others in this terrorist act.”

The government and the people of Pakistan convey solidarity and support with the government and people of Afghanistan at this dastardly terrorist attack.

We convey our deepest sympathies for those who have lost their loved ones and our sincere prayers and wishes are for early recovery of those who have sustained injuries in this heinous terror attack.

We reiterate our strong condemnation of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. In our view, cooperation among the states is important for effectively combating and eliminating the scourge of terrorism.

Turkish FO, in a statement on Sunday, condoled, “We learned with great sorrow that many were killed and wounded due to a terrorist attack perpetrated at a hotel in Kabul.”

We strongly condemn this terrorist attack and convey our condolences to the friendly and brotherly government and people of Afghanistan.