Kabul: Multiple casualties have been reported after at least four gunmen launched an attack on Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel late on Saturday.
According to Afghan government officials, an intense gunbattle between the attackers and the security forces is still on.
In the ensuing gunbattle, the Afghan special security forces have killed two of the attackers, the Interior Ministry spokesman confirmed.
Security forces are trying to get to the others, he added.
The gunmen stormed the hotel on Saturday evening, shooting at guests and detonating grenades.
Initial reports claimed that at least five people were injured. However, it is still not clear how many have been killed.
The attack began at about 9 pm with reports suggesting the gunmen shot at security guards as they made their way into the five-storey building.
They targeted staff and guests before special forces were called in.
Security forces then cleared the ground floor of the luxury hotel but the attackers are still on the floors above, spokesman Nasrat Rahimi was quoted as saying by BBC.
Some reports said the hotel had been hosting an IT conference attended by provincial officials at the time. One witness told Reuters news agency that the attackers had taken hostages.
The attack comes just days after the US embassy in Kabul issued a warning about hotels in the city.
"We are aware of reports that extremist groups may be planning an attack against hotels in Kabul," the embassy wrote in a public security alert published on Thursday, though it highlighted another hotel near the international airport as a possible target.
"These groups may also be targeting public gatherings/demonstrations, government facilities, transportation, markets, and places where foreigners are known to congregate."
(With Agency inputs)