20 killed in Kabul airport blasts

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Medical and hospital staff took an injured man out of a car for treatment after two blasts, which killed at least five and injured a dozen outside Kabul airport on August 26, 2021. – AFP

Two powerful bombings outside Kabul airport killed 20 people Thursday, just hours after Western nations warned of the threat of terrorism and thousands more hoping to fly out of Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. Gathered

The bombings came as the August 31 deadline for the United States to withdraw its troops and for that and other Western countries to dismantle a large-scale aircraft that had already evacuated about 100,000 people. Is.

The airport is the only part of the country since the Taliban returned to power on August 15, and large crowds have gathered in anticipation of the evacuation.

This was stated by Zabihullah Mujahid, the main spokesman of the Taliban. AFP The twin blasts killed “between 13 and 20” people and injured 52, while six people were killed and 90 injured in Kabul hospitals.

The Pentagon said a large number of US troops had been killed, which spokesman John Kirby described as a “complex attack.”

US President Joe Biden had earlier referred to the threat of “severe” terrorism from ISIL’s regional chapter.

The Taliban condemned the bombings, saying they were in US military control.

A statement issued by Mujahid on Twitter said that the Islamic Emirate strongly condemns the targeting of civilians at Kabul Airport.

‘Really heartbreaking’

Pictures posted on social media, which could not be immediately confirmed, show the men taking the injured to a safe place in a wheelbarrow.

In another photo, a boy is seen holding the arm of a man whose clothes were soaked in blood.

More than 95,000 Afghans and foreigners have fled Afghanistan by US-led plane since the hardline Taliban movement took control of the country on August 15.

Despite growing warnings from the United States and terrorists, crowds of people eager to flee the Taliban continued to gather at the airport, ahead of the August 31 deadline set by Biden to end the withdrawal and withdraw. Became increasingly restless. Troops

Biden and his aides did not meet the deadline – even some foreign countries warned that they would be forced to leave endangered Afghans behind.

The Pentagon reiterated earlier Thursday that the operation would continue until the cut-off.

But many Western allies have already wrapped up their aircraft operations, including in Canada, whose government has said it is “really heartbreaking” to release those who want to save.

ISIS threat

In recent years, ISIS has been responsible for some of the deadliest attacks in these countries. It has massacred civilians in mosques, shrines, public squares and even hospitals.

But it is appropriate to mention ISIS that the Taliban are rivals and they oppose each other.

The Taliban have promised a soft-brand rule since their first term in office, ending in 2001 when the United States invaded because they harbored al-Qaeda.

But many Afghans fear violent retaliation for working with foreign militants, Western missions or the former US-backed government, as well as the return of the Taliban government.

There are particular concerns for women, who were largely barred from education and employment and could leave home with only one man during the group’s 1996-2001 period.

‘Red line’

Some Afghans gathered outside the airport have foreign passports, visas or travel qualifications, but most do not.

Many people have been killed in the chaos around the airport in recent days.

Despite the tragic scenes, the Taliban has rejected an extension of next Tuesday’s deadline for the withdrawal of foreign troops, calling it a “red line.”

Evacuating Kabul after the attack should be a priority

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said coalition forces should continue to evacuate as many vulnerable people as possible from Kabul, despite the fact that it carried out a “terrible terrorist attack”.

He tweeted after the two deaths, “Our priority is to get as many people as possible to safety as soon as possible.”

Belgium and the Netherlands have already stopped their flights at the airport, and other Allies have feared that those at risk will be left behind in the coming hours and days.

European Commission President Charles Michel echoed Stoltenberg’s call for the evacuation to continue.

“Safe passage at the airport is important,” he tweeted.

‘Complete panic’

The deadly blasts created “complete panic” among Afghans who had gathered outside in the hope of fleeing to safety, away from the country’s new Taliban rulers.

The men, dressed in blood-soaked clothes, were taken out of the scene in a wheelbarrow, while a boy grabbed the arm of a man with a head injury, in photos posted on social media.

“Bodies, flesh and people were thrown into a nearby canal,” said Milad, who was at the site of the first blast. AFP.

Another witness said that when people heard the blast, there was complete panic.

“I saw a man running with an injured child in his arms.”

Confused, he said he had left the documents he hoped would help him board the flight with his wife and three children.

“Everyone is worried and the army is taking up positions around the airport.”



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