22/06/2015 12:11 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST

Afghan Parliament Under Attack; Explosion, Gunfire Heard Outside

SHAH MARAI via Getty Images
An Afghan policeman stands guard at the site where a suicide bomber targeted a vehicle convoy of Afghan lawmakers in Kabul on November 16, 2014. A suicide bomber targeted a vehicle convoy of Afghan lawmakers that included a prominent female MP, killing three civilians and injuring 17 others, officials said.The blast, in which the attacker detonated an explosives-packed car, left the MPs' vehicles badly damaged on a main road in the west of Kabul, close to the parliament. AFP PHOTO/SHAH Marai (Photo credit should read SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty Images)

KABUL — A loud explosion rocked the Afghan parliament and shattered windows on Monday as members were in session and gunfire was heard shortly afterwards.

Television was broadcasting live from the building in the west of the capital, Kabul, when the explosion struck and lawmakers were seen leaving the building.

It was not immediately clear what caused the blast or whether they were casualties.

"It was a huge blast that shook the building and shattered windows. We are right now in a safe place," said lawmaker Shukria Barekzai.

Militant attacks in Kabul have risen in the past two months after a lull at the beginning of the year. The city of 3.5 million has never fully stabilized since a U.S.-led war ousted the hardline Islamist Taliban regime in 2001.

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