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Afghan police: 7 dead in attack on UN in Kabul

GUNMEN attacked a guest house used by UN staff in the Afghan capital of Kabul early today, killing at least seven people including three UN staff, officials said. A Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility, saying it was meant as an assault on the upcoming presidential election.

Heavy gunfire reverberated through the streets shortly after dawn and a large plume of smoke rose over the city following the attack in the Shar-e-Naw district. Kabul police chief Abdul Rahman said seven people were killed, including some attackers.

UN spokesman Adrian Edwards confirmed that three UN staff were among the dead and one was seriously wounded. He said 20 UN staff were known to be registered there but he was unsure whether all were there at the time of the attack.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid claimed responsibility for the attack in a telephone call to The Associated Press, saying three militants with suicide vests, grenades and machine guns carried out the assault.

He said three days ago the Taliban issued a statement threatening anyone working on the Nov. 7 runoff election between President Hamid Karzai and Abdullah Abbdullah. "This is our first attack."


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