LRIP

US withdrawal hits by rocket at Kabul airport

August 30, 2021

On Monday, launchers did strike a neighborhood near Kabul’s international airport, as the United States began withdrawing from Afghanistan. It was not even immediately clear who pulled them out. According to observers, the rockets landed in Salim Karwan neighborhood of Kabul on Monday morning. The blasts were followed by a bombardment of gunfire, but it was not clear who was firing.

The observers spoke of the vague fear of retaliation when they heard three explosions and then saw a flash in the sky. According to them, people fled after the explosions. A request for comment from US officials was not immediately received.

After the rocket fire, US military cargo planes continued to evacuate the airport. The White House released a statement in Washington saying that authorities provide information to President Joe Biden on the “rocket attack at Hamid Karzai International Airport (HKIA)” in Kabul. According to the statement, “The president has been informed that operations at HKIA are ongoing, and reaffirmed his order that admirals strengthen their efforts to prioritize what needs to be done to safeguard our forces in the region”.

According to American officials, A US drone strike on Sunday blew up a vehicle carrying “several suicide bombers” belonging to the Islamic State (IS) in Afghanistan before they could attack the continued military relocation at Kabul’s international airport. According to an Afghan official, three children were killed in the attack. The United States plans to leave Afghanistan by Tuesday. By then, the US will have completed a massive two-week flight of over 114,000 Afghans and foreigners, withdrawing its last troops, and effectively ending America’s longest war with the Taliban back in power.

On Sunday, the US State Department issued a statement signed by around 100 countries, along with NATO and the European Union, declaring that it has received “confirmation” from the Taliban that individuals with travel documents would be able to return home. On Tuesday, the Taliban has said that normal travel will be allowed after the US withdrawal is completed and they will take control of the airport. On the other hand, the Afghans are concerned about the Taliban resuming their oppressive rule. There have been sporadic reports of killings and other abuses across the country. An IS suicide attack outside the airport earlier this week killed at least 169 Afghans and 13 US service members. On Saturday, the US conducted another drone attack within the country, killing two members of IS’, which has previously fought the Taliban, stated a local TV network in Afghanistan.

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