Nine killed in Kabul's Serena Hotel attack
Four foreigners among casualties; six more injured
Nine people were killed in an attack on the Serena Hotel in the Afghan capital of Kabul on March 20.
An AFP reporter and his wife and two of his three children as well as two Canadian women were among the nine civilians killed. Six people were also injured in the attack.
According to authorities, four men with pistols stuffed in their socks entered the luxury hotel and opened fire in a restaurant, which was hosting celebrations to mark the Persian new year – Navroz.
According to a CNN report, police believe the gunmen entered the hotel by smuggling pistols in their shoes and then hid in the bathroom for several hours before the attack took place. This was later confirmed by a Guardian report, which quoted a Taliban spokesman who revealed the gunmen managed to bypass security by using a back entrance to the hotel.
“Tonight at 9.15 some mujahideen entered from an unofficial door. Foreigners and officials from Kabul administration, important people were there tonight,” said Zabihullah Mujihid.
He said they were armed with light and heavy weapons and suicide vests, although only gunfire was heard during the attack.
Following the attack, all four assailants were killed by security guards. The attack came hours after militants killed 11 people in a police station in Jalalabad eastern Afghanistan. A further 22 people were injured in the same attack.