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German security guard killed in northern Afghanistan

Three foreign nationals and two Afghans were killed on Friday when Taliban suicide bombers stormed the compound of a US aid organization in northern Afghanistan. One German and one British guard were among those killed.

A northern alliance soldier in Kunduz city

The siege took place in relatively quiet Kunduz city

A German security guard was killed on Friday when Taliban militants stormed the compound of a US aid organisation in northern Afghanistan, a US embassy official said.

"Afghan troops are working to clear the building and medevac the injured," the official said.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said two other foreign nationals - one British and one Filipino - and two Afghans were killed during a five-hour-long gun battle at the offices of Development Alternatives Inc in the city of Kunduz.

Kunduz Governor Mohammad Omar said a bomber detonated his explosive-laden vehicle at the gate of the compound, opening the way for his comrades to enter.

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack.

"This morning six Taliban suicide bombers attacked the United States development organisation branch," Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said from an undisclosed location.

"According to our information there were a total of 52 foreigners in the building apart from the guards and policemen around," he said.

Development Alternatives Inc is a global consulting company that has a contract with Washington's international aid arm, USAID, to work on local governance and community development issues in the area.

It has been operating in Kunduz city for the past four months.

Author: Gabriel Borrud (AFP/dpa)
Editor: Chuck Penfold

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