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Suicide attackers hit Afghan police compound near Kabul; gunbattle ensues

Security forces personnel arrive at the site of a suicide bombing near a police compound in Surobi district of Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Feb. 21, 2014. Afghan officials said suicide bombers have attacked a police compound in a mountainous area near the capital, Kabul. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)

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Security forces personnel arrive at the site of a suicide bombing near a police compound in Surobi district of Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Feb. 21, 2014. Afghan officials said suicide bombers have attacked a police compound in a mountainous area near the capital, Kabul. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)

KABUL - Militants attacked a police compound near Kabul with explosives and guns on Friday, setting off an hour-long firefight that left one officer dead and four wounded, according to Afghan officials.

Interior Ministry spokesman Seddiq Seddiqi said a suicide car bomber first blew through the gates of the district police headquarters in Surobi early Monday morning.

Two other male attackers clad in the all-enveloping burqa traditionally worn by Afghan women then opened fire and a gunbattle ensued, he said.

Inside the compound, the bloodied body of one attacker lay sprawled on the ground between blackened police vehicles and as security forces roamed around.

Kabul Police said in a statement that the three attackers were killed, along with one police officer. Four officers were wounded, the force said in a statement.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack in an emailed statement.

Surobi, about 45 kilometres (30 miles) east of Kabul, is a remote mountainous area rife with Taliban activity.

Afghan insurgents have increased attacks in recent months, intensifying a campaign to regain territory as foreign forces draw down ahead of a full withdrawal at the end of 2014.

The Taliban also have vowed to disrupt the country's April 5 election.

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