Two terrorist attacks were carried out at Kabul’s airport in Afghanistan, with one wounding at least three US marines, the Pentagon has confirmed, amid the pandemonium caused there by Democrat President Joe Biden’s botched military withdrawal and even more botched evacuation.
Some 5,200 US troops are presently in control of the airport, while tens of thousands of Americans, other Westerners, and Afghan US allies have been flocking there in order to escape from the rule of the radical Islamist Taliban to whom Biden recently surrendered the country.
Counter-terrorism experts were widely worried about potential terrorist attacks despite the security assurances of the Taliban – and their fears have unfortunately materialized.
‘Complex’ terrorist attack
The first terrorist attack on Thursday was carried out by a suicide bomber outside the Abbey Gate of Kabul airport, injuring at least 3 US marines and setting off a firefight, according to a US official cited by Fox News.
The report says last night there were about 5,000 people at the Abbey Gate, the overwhelming majority of whom were Afghans but also potentially some US citizens.
The Pentagon has confirmed the Abbey Gate suicide bombing attack as well as a second blast at the nearby Baron Hotel where American citizens were sheltered recently.
Pentagon press secretary John Kirby confirmed on Twitter that the Abbey Gate explosion was “the result of a complex attack” which “resulted in a number of US and civilian casualties”.
He added that “at least one other explosion” can be confirmed, “at or near the Baron Hotel” near Abbey Gate.
For the time being, it remains unclear how many people were injured overall, and what kinds of injuries the US troops suffered.
Fox News also cites Capitol Hill sources as saying there have been multiple explosions in Kabul.
According to figures announced a day earlier by Biden’s Secretary of State Antony Blinken, there are about 1,500 US citizens left in Afghanistan, while a total of 82,300 people have been airlifted out of the country including 4,500 Americans.
The terrorist attacks at Kabul airport have occurred just hours after the State Department issued a warning telling Americans still outside the airport to “leave immediately” because of a growing terrorist threat.
On Thursday, the State Department also confirmed reports of at least one large explosion and gunfire, and told US citizens to “avoid traveling to the airport” and “airport gates at this time.”
According to a White House official, Biden has been briefed on the terrorist attack.
He was scheduled to meet with his team on national security on Thursday morning.
Counter-terrorism experts had been warned that an attack might be carried out by ISIS-K, a group that is even more radically Islamist than the Taliban, and at odds with the other major terrorist network in Afghanistan, al-Qaeda.