Multiple blasts and gunfire rocked Kabul's diplomatic quarter after the brazen raid began yesterday, just hours after President Ashraf Ghani voiced optimism that a peace process with the Taliban would resume within weeks.

The government in Madrid had earlier confirmed that a Spanish policemen was also killed in the assault, which began when a huge car bomb struck during rush hour yesterday.

The powerful blast, which sent a thick plume of smoke into the sky, was followed by multiple explosions through the night along with sporadic bursts of gunfire.

The attack follows a deadly 27-hour Taliban siege of Kandahar airport this week as the militants ramp up attacks despite the onset of the harsh winter season, when the fighting usually calms down.

The Taliban also claimed responsibility for yesterday's attack, saying the target was a foreign guest house.

The Spanish embassy was earlier reported to be the target of the attack, but Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy clarified that the assault was nearby and not on the compound.

Read more: Spanish embassy was not targeted in Kabul attack: PM Mariano Rajoy

Latest News from World News Desk