An explosion occurred today (Thursday) at the entrance to the airport in Kabul, and there are casualties there – according to local reports in Afghanistan. Thirteen people were killed in the blast, including American soldiers and children.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said on Twitter that there was another explosion. “We can confirm that the blast was the result of a complex attack, which led to a number of American casualties and civilians. We can also confirm that at least one more explosion occurred in or near a hotel closet, a short distance from the previous explosion. We will continue to update,” he wrote.
A White House source said President Joe Biden was briefed on the incident, which took place hours before his expected meeting with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. Shortly before the start of reports of the explosion, the Prime Minister’s Office announced that German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s planned visit to Israel next week had been canceled due to the situation in Afghanistan.
Sewage canal where Afghans were vetted after their documents was packed with Afghans including women and children. A suicide attacker blew himself up in the middle of a large crowd. At least another attacker started shooting, multiple eye witnesses in the area&a friend tells me. pic.twitter.com/1MHuLOZnDl
– BILAL SARWARY (@bsarwary) August 26, 2021
Since the beginning of the day, several European countries and Canada have announced the end of the air evacuation operation from the Afghan capital, which was the largest in history, due to the numerous warnings of terrorist attacks. Despite this, masses continued to march on the compound, which is secured on the outside by Taliban personnel.
Britain’s Armed Forces Minister James Hippie said this morning that there was “highly credible” intelligence information on the planning of terrorist attacks against those gathering at Kabul airport. “They need to move to a safe place and wait for further instructions,” he told BBC radio.
The Taliban is urging citizens not to leave the country, while saying those holding the appropriate documents will be allowed to leave Afghanistan with the resumption of commercial flights after the withdrawal is complete. Despite his promises that he changed his face, many feared the rigid regime that characterized the Taliban regime from 1996 to 2001. Those years were marked by mass executions and severe restrictions on women, who were banned from attending school or going to work.