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Kabul hotel siege over

The armed siege of an exclusive lakeside hotel on the outskirts of Kabul came to an end after 12 tense hours. Gunmen who stormed the Spozhmai Hotel late on Thursday night took scores of people hostage. Afghan police say 13 people have been killed. They said the dead were four civilians, three guards, five militants and a police officer. Witnesses said the attack began late on Thursday night. SOUNDBITE: OMID KHAN, BAKERY WORKER, SAYING (Dari): "I was working at the bakery when the fighting started. It was late at night and my colleagues wanted to sleep but suddenly were were fired on. I don't know what happened after that." The Taliban says it was behind the hotel attack. It said the building was being used by wealthy Afghans and foreigners for wild parties in the run-up to Friday's religious holiday. With NATO-led forces preparing to withdraw most of their combat troops by the end of 2014, the incident shows the Taliban can still stage high-profile attacks. Paul Chapman, Reuters

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