Kabul/New Delhi: A top Afghan official has been quoted by an Afghan news agency as saying that militants attacked an upscale guesthouse in Kabul on Wednesday night thinking that Indian Ambassador Amar Sinha was inside.
The attack at the Park Palace guesthouse in Kabul’s Kolola Pushta left five people dead, including two Indians and an American, officials were quoted as saying.
Khaama Press quoted President Ashraf Ghani’s special envoy for good governance Ahmad Zia Massoud as telling reporters that the militants attacked the guesthouse thinking the Indian envoy was present in the compound.
Massoud visited the attack scene in Kabul late on Wednesday night and spoke to reporters there.
“Massoud said the attack on Park Palace guesthouse is likely a political attack but he did not elaborate further,” the Khaama Press report said.
“A security official earlier said a musical event was due to be organised, which was due to be attended by the Turkish and Indian guests as well Afghan nationals.”
Sinha had tweeted about Indian casualties in the attack, which is being owned by the Taliban.
“Unfortunately, a few Indian casualties among others at the Kabul g/house attack today,” Ambassador Sinha tweeted.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier tweeted that he was concerned about the situation after hearing the news.
“In the aircraft I got news about the attack in Kabul. Am concerned about the situation & I pray for everyone’s safety,” Modi said in a Twitter message.
Sinha earlier said all Indians were reported safe and the embassy was in constant touch with security forces.
Gunmen stormed the Park Palace guesthouse, which is popular with foreigners, on Wednesday evening, leading to a seven-hour siege that ended in five people being killed.
They entered the building when a party was going on, trapping many foreigners waiting for a musical concert to begin. Police and soldiers rushed to the scene and surrounded the building, leading to a stand-off. Bursts of gunfire could be heard.
Kabul police chief Abdul Rahman reported early Thursday that five people were killed, six wounded and 54 hostages were rescued.