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At least four dead in US consulate attack in Afghanistan

15 september 2013, 13:49
0
At least four Afghans were killed Friday in a Taliban suicide attack on the US consulate in the Afghan city of Herat, AFP reports according to the State Department said Friday.

There were no US casualties in the attack on Herat, a key business hub located in western Afghanistan near the border with Iran, deputy State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters.

At least three Afghan guards and one interpreter were killed, Harf said. Earlier, Afghan officials had said one guard was dead and 18 other people wounded.

Harf cautioned that the toll could still change.

The consulate compound, in which US diplomats lived, was closed until further notice, and all US officials relocated to Kabul, she said.

The attack began at about 5:30 am Friday when seven heavily armed Taliban fighters set off two car bombs and fired a rocket-propelled grenade at the consulate before engaging in a gun battle with security forces.

"After a while, all of these suicide bombers get killed in the attack," Abdul Hameed Hameedi, the deputy security chief of Herat province, told AFP earlier in the day.

Harf said the "consulate's interior compound was not breached."

"Our security measures here were effective," she told reporters.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

On September 11, 2012, an attack on the US mission in the Libyan city of Benghazi left four Americans dead, including the ambassador.

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