Isis has claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing and ongoing gun attack which targeted the Iraqi Embassy in Kabul.
The attack in the Afghan capital was still underway as witnesses reported hearing gunshots around the site of the explosion as police cordoned off the area of the firefight.
Police officials said a car bomb exploded outside the embassy, followed by an attempt by gunmen to enter the building.
Isis claimed responsibility for the attack via its Amaq news agency.
The group’s news agency said two attackers had blown up the gate with stick bombs, allegedly killing seven guards, before two fighters had stormed the embassy compound.
Afghan officials are yet to report casualty numbers.
The Iraqi foreign ministry said two Afghan guards were killed in the attack and attempts are underway to evacuate two Iraqi embassy staffers.
Smoke can be seen billowing from the area near the Iraqi embassy after witnesses reported hearing a loud explosion (Hamdard/Twitter)
Witnesses reported hearing a loud explosion followed by gunfire and seeing smoke billowing from Share Naw neighbourhood.
A police officer in the area, who identified himself only as Abdullah, said the gunfire was initially intense but was now sporadic.
The area was surrounded by armoured vehicles and a large contingent of police and Afghan soldiers.
More than an hour later, witnesses reported hearing another powerful explosion and saw black smoke billowing skyward. It wasn’t immediately clear what had caused the last explosion.
At least one eyewitness, a store owner who goes by the name of Hafizullah (many Afghans use only one name) told the Associated Press he saw the bodies of two policemen on the ground before armoured personnel carriers and police arrived to cordon off the area.
“The explosion was so strong. I was so afraid,” said Maryam, a woman crying near the site of the attack said.
After Iraqi forces, backed by a US-led coalition, recaptured the city of Mosul from Isis earlier in July, the Iraq Embassy had called reporters to its offices in Kabul to express concerns that the local Isis affiliate might stage large-scale attacks elsewhere to draw away attention from the militant group’s losses in Iraq.
The Iraq Embassy is located in a part of the city known as Shahre Naw, which lies outside the so-called “green zone” where most foreign embassies and diplomatic missions are located and which is heavily fortified with a phalanx of guards and giant cement blast walls.
By comparison, the Iraqi Embassy is located on a small street in a neighbourhood dominated by markets and businesses.