Pentagon confirms explosion outside Kabul airport as U.S. rushes toward Afghanistan evacuation deadline


Australian residents and visa holders put together to board the Royal Australian Air Pressure C-17A Globemaster III plane, as Australian Military infantry personnel present safety and help with cargo, at Hamid Karzai Worldwide Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan August 22, 2021.

SGT Glen McCarthy | Australia’s Division of Protection | through Reuters

WASHINGTON — The Pentagon on Thursday confirmed an explosion at Hamid Karzai Worldwide Airport in Kabul, the place Western forces are dashing to evacuate as many individuals as potential in a foreign country.

It was unclear whether or not there have been any casualties, in accordance with the Pentagon’s prime spokesman, John Kirby.

A White Home official informed NBC Information that President Joe Biden was briefed on the blast.

The newest revelation comes hours after the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan issued a safety alert urging People to keep away from touring to Kabul airport.

“U.S. residents who’re on the Abbey Gate, East Gate, or North Gate now ought to depart instantly,” the alert mentioned.

Within the final 24 hours, Western forces evacuated 13,400 individuals out of Kabul on 91 army cargo plane flights. Because the mass evacuations started on Aug. 14, roughly 95,700 individuals have been airlifted out of Afghanistan.

About 101,300 individuals have been evacuated for the reason that finish of July, together with about 4,500 U.S. residents and their households.

A U.S. Marine supplies help throughout an evacuation at Hamid Karzai Worldwide Airport, Afghanistan, August 22, 2021.

US Marines | Reuters

Secretary of State Antony Blinken mentioned Wednesday that there could also be as many as 1,500 People in Afghanistan left to evacuate, a calculation he defined was “tough to pin down with absolute precision at any given second.”

The nation’s prime diplomat added that the U.S. at present is “aggressively reaching out” to about 1,000 contacts “a number of occasions a day, via a number of channels of communication” to find out in the event that they nonetheless wish to depart and to present them directions on how to take action.

Blinken added that the precise quantity may additionally be decrease.

Learn extra on the developments in Afghanistan:

Biden on Tuesday reiterated to leaders of the G-7, NATO, United Nations and European Union that america will withdraw its army from Afghanistan by the top of the month.

The president warned that staying longer in Afghanistan carries critical dangers for international troops and civilians. Biden mentioned that ISIS-Ok, an Afghanistan-based affiliate of the phobia group, presents a rising menace to the airport.

“On daily basis we’re on the bottom is one other day we all know that ISIS-Ok is looking for to focus on the airport and assault each U.S. and allied forces and harmless civilians,” he mentioned.

 About 5,400 U.S. servicemembers are aiding with evacuation efforts, with practically 200 U.S. army plane devoted to the mission.

The Taliban mentioned earlier Tuesday that the group will now not enable Afghan nationals to go away the nation on evacuation flights nor will they settle for an extension of the withdrawal deadline past the top of the month.

“We aren’t in favor of permitting Afghans to go away,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid informed reporters throughout a press convention on Tuesday.

“They [the Americans] have the chance, they’ve all of the assets, they will take all of the folks that belong to them, however we aren’t going to permit Afghans to go away and we won’t prolong the deadline,” he mentioned. Evacuations carried out by international forces after Aug. 31 could be a “violation” of a Biden administration promise to finish the U.S. army’s mission within the nation, Mujahid mentioned.

This story is creating. Please examine again for updates.



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