US, UK warn citizens to avoid Afghan hotels

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Kabul

Days after dozens of people were killed at a mosque in an attack claimed by Daesh, the United States and Britain warned their citizens on Monday to avoid hotels in Afghanistan.

The Taliban, which seized power in August and declared an Islamic emirate, are seeking international recognition and assistance to avoid a humanitarian disaster and ease Afghanistan’s economic crisis.

But, as Daesh transitions from a rebel army to a governing power, they are struggling to contain the threat from the Afghanistan chapter of Daesh.

“US citizens who are at or near the Serena Hotel should leave immediately,” the US State Department said, citing “security threats” in the area.

“In light of the increased risks you are advised not to stay in hotels, particularly in Kabul (such as the Serena Hotel),” Britain’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office added.

Since the Taliban takeover, many foreigners have left Afghanistan, but some journalists and aid workers remain in the capital.

The well-known Serena, a luxury hotel popular with business travellers and foreign guests, has twice been the target of attacks by the Taliban.—AFP

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