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Journalist and Family Buried After Afghan Hotel Attack

Afghan journalist Sardar Ahmad, his wife, and two children are buried in Kabul on March 23.
Afghan journalist Sardar Ahmad, his wife, and two children are buried in Kabul on March 23.
Hundreds of mourners turned out in pouring rain for the funeral of Sardar Ahmad, AFP's senior reporter in Afghanistan, together with his wife and two of their children.

Ahmad and his family members were among the victims of a Taliban attack on a Kabul luxury hotel.

After a funeral procession through the capital, they were buried side by side on March 23 at a cemetery on the outskirts of Kabul.

Four teenage gunmen with concealed pistols carried out a raid on Kabul's Serena hotel on March 20.

The 40-year-old Ahmad; his wife Homaira; and their six-year-old daughter Nilofar and five-year-old son Omar were among nine civilians killed in the assault.

The couple's youngest son, two-year-old Abozar, survived with bullet wounds to his head, chest, and leg.

He remains hospitalized in intensive care.

In related news, on March 23, authorities in Kabul said the assault on the Serena was planned by a foreign intelligence service.

A statement by Afghanistan's National Security Council, (NSC), did not specify which country was purportedly responsible for the attack.

However, Afghan officials routinely accuse Pakistan of backing militants who launch terrorist attacks inside Afghanistan.

The NSC alleged that a Pakistani diplomat was seen scoping out the hotel's corridors ahead of the night raid.

The statement also said that the NSC has concluded that students at Pakistani religious schools are gearing up to disrupt Afghanistan's presidential election in April.

The NSC said neither the Taliban nor the Haqqani militant group was even aware the attack was in the offing.

With reporting by AFP and AP