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American Aid Group Caught Up In Taliban Attack on Kabul

 / Updated 

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KABUL — Taliban insurgents attacked a compound used by a California-based non-profit aid group Friday, the organization and security sources said.

Insurgents detonated a vehicle packed with explosives in a residential area of Kabul close to the offices of the speaker of the Afghan parliament and the campaign headquarters of several presidential candidates.

San Rafael-based Roots for Peace, which works to replace minefields with vineyards, was caught up in the attack, its CEO told NBC News.

No Americans were hurt in the attack and none of the employees of Roots of Peace was injured, Sahfi Anwari told NBC News.

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A security guard named Akbar told NBC News that after the initial explosion, three militants armed with AK 47 and rocket-propelled grenades ran into the building, exchanging fire with the guards.

A sustained gun battle between police and insurgents raged for more than four hours.

Two people were killed and three others were injured in the initial explosion. Five attackers were killed by police, Sediq Seddiqi of the Afghan Ministry of Interior said.

The building is riddled with bullet holes, and all windows are shattered.

The guest house is popular with westerners and is used occasionally for church services, security sources told NBC News.

Reuters contributed to this report.

An Afghan policeman evacuates foreigners from the site of an attack in Kabul Friday.OMAR SOBHANI / Reuters

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