Kabul: Seven insurgents planning a suicide attack in Kabul have been killed in a pre-dawn gunbattle in the capital, reports said on Thursday.
National Directorate of Security spokesman Lutfullah Mahsal confirmed the development by saying, “A group of insurgents armed with suicide vests, rockets and machineguns planned to seize a tall building in Kabul's Shar-i-Naw area."
Acting on intelligence, security forces raided a house in the eastern Pul-e-Charkhi neighbourhood where the insurgents have amassed weapons and ambushed the men when they returned to the site around 1 am (local time) to prepare for the attack, Mashal said.
A gunbattle broke out and five of the insurgents blew themselves up with explosives. Police shot and killed the remaining men a few hours after dawn, Mashal said.
Mahsal said a mini-van full of explosives had also been found in the house.
On April 15, in the biggest coordinated attack on the capital in 10 years of war, three squads of suicide attackers took up positions in high buildings under construction and fired on government offices, embassies and military bases.
Seventeen hours of fighting left 51 dead, including 36 attackers.
NATO has some 130,000 US-led troops in Afghanistan helping the government fight an insurgency by hardline Taliban Islamists.
With Agency Input
First Published: Thursday, August 02, 2012, 15:38