LIVE: 12 US military members, multiple Afghans killed in suicide bombings outside Kabul airport

0
303

WARNING: The images below contain graphic content. Discretion is advised.

KABUL, Afghanistan (NewsNation Now) —  Two suicide bombers and gunmen attacked crowds of Afghans flocking to Kabul’s airport Thursday, transforming a scene of desperation into one of horror in the waning days of a massive airlift that has drawn thousands of people seeking to flee the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan.

At least 12 U.S. service members were killed in the Afghanistan bombings, including 11 Marines and one Navy medic, according to two U.S. officials. Officials say several US military troops were wounded. They warn, however, that the numbers may grow.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the first attack occurred outside the Abbey Gate in the Kabul airport. The second attack was “at or near the Baron Hotel, a short distance from Abbey Gate.” He added it was a “complex attack” with multiple U.S. and civilian causalities.


Texas man strips down during school board meeting to make point about mask mandates

The explosion went off in a crowd of people waiting to enter the airport, according to Adam Khan, an Afghan waiting nearby. He said several people appeared to have been killed or wounded, including some who lost body parts.

Kirby later said “we can confirm that a number of U.S. service members were killed in today’s complex attack at Kabul airport. A number of others are being treated for wounds. We also know that a number of Afghans fell victim to this heinous attack.”

A U.S. official, who spoke to the Associated Press on the condition of anonymity, says the complex attack outside Kabul airport is “definitely believed” to have been carried out by the Islamic State group.

At least 13 people were killed and dozens wounded, Russian officials and aid workers said. It is unclear if the American military members were included in the Russian total.

The State Department also confirmed the blast and said there were reports of gunfire. In a tweet, the department warned U.S. citizens to “avoid traveling to the airport and avoid airport gates. Those at the Abbey Gate, East Gate, or North Gate now should leave immediately.”


Graphic images, videos show aftermath of Kabul airport explosions

The Pentagon is expected to brief the press about the latest on evacuation efforts and the attack outside the airport.

NewsNation will stream the Pentagon briefing in the player above.

President Joe Biden was also briefed on the explosion and was meeting with his national security team to discuss the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan.

The Taliban condemned the attack, saying it happened in an area controlled by U.S. forces.

Thousands of Afghans have been gathered at the airport for days trying to flee the country since the Taliban’s takeover earlier this month.


Airbnb to give 20K Afghan refugees temporary housing

Several countries urged people to avoid the airport, where an official said there was a threat of a suicide bombing. But just days — or even hours for some nations — before the evacuation effort ends, few appeared to heed the call.

Even as the area was hit, the official said evacuation flights continued to take off from Kabul airport, which Western governments earlier warned was a target.

Over the last week, the airport has been the scene of some of the most searing images of the chaotic end of America’s longest war and the Taliban’s takeover, as flight after flight took off carrying those who fear a return to the militants’ brutal rule.


‘They’re going to kill him’: Army veteran attempting to rescue Afghan interpreter

NewsNationNow.com has spoken with both refugees and advocates desperate to rescue as many people as possible from the country. They have described dangerous conditions on the ground as the Taliban tries to stop people from leaving.

Army veteran Chris McClanathan decried the Biden administration’s troop withdrawal strategy as he explained the struggle his former interpreter, Romal, is facing attempting to leave.

“Unless they tell me something terrible has happened. I’m going to keep doing what I can do. But it’s a shame that I have to do this. Our administration should be doing this,” said McClanathan.

Already, some countries have ended their evacuations and begun to withdraw their soldiers and diplomats, signaling the beginning of the end of one of history’s largest airlifts. The Taliban have so far honored a pledge not to attack Western forces during the evacuation, but insist the foreign troops must be out by America’s self-imposed deadline of Aug. 31.


Horse dewormer ivermectin given to inmates at Arkansas jail

The hard-line Islamic group wrested back control of the country nearly 20 years after being ousted in a U.S.-led invasion following the 9/11 attacks, which al-Qaida orchestrated while being sheltered by the group.

Amid the warnings and the pending American withdrawal, Canada ended its evacuations, and European nations halted or prepared to stop their own operations.


Former US soldier helps Afghan friend escape Kabul

The Taliban have said they’ll allow Afghans to leave via commercial flights after the deadline next week, but it remains unclear which airlines would return to an airport controlled by the militants.

TOPSHOT – Medical and hospital staff bring an injured man on a stretcher for treatment after two blasts, which killed at least five and wounded a dozen, outside the airport in Kabul on August 26, 2021. (Photo by Wakil KOHSAR / AFP) (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR/AFP via Getty Images)
EDITORS NOTE: Graphic content / Medical and hospital staff bring an injured man on a stretcher for treatment after two blasts, which killed at least five and wounded a dozen, outside the airport in Kabul on August 26, 2021. (Photo by Wakil KOHSAR / AFP) (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR/AFP via Getty Images)
TOPSHOT – Medical and hospital staff carry an injured man out of a car for treatment after two blasts, which killed at least five and wounded a dozen, outside the airport in Kabul on August 26, 2021. (Photo by Wakil KOHSAR / AFP) (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR/AFP via Getty Images)
EDITORS NOTE: Graphic content / TOPSHOT – Wounded women arrive at a hospital for treatment after two blasts, which killed at least five and wounded a dozen, outside the airport in Kabul on August 26, 2021. (Photo by Wakil KOHSAR / AFP) (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR/AFP via Getty Images)

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here