US, UK, Australia warn of terror threat at Kabul airport
The US and its allies have urged people to move away from the vicinity of the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul
The US and its allies have urged people to move away from the vicinity of the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, citing the threat of attack by the Islamic State terror group.
Reuters reported the US embassy in Kabul had advised US nationals to avoid travelling to the Kabul airport and called on those at the gates of the airport to leave immediately. The embassy cited "security threats" as the reason for the warning.
The US embassy statement said, "US citizens who are at the Abbey Gate, East Gate, or North Gate now should leave immediately... Avoid airport gates at this time."
The UK and Australia also issued similar advisories on the possibility of a terror attack at the Kabul airport.
Ahmedullah Rafiqzai, an Afghan official working at the Directorate of Civil Aviation at the Kabul airport, told Reuters that "It's very easy for a suicide bomber to attack the corridors filled with people and warnings have been issued repeatedly... But people don't want to move, it's their determination to leave this country that they are not scared to even die, everyone is risking their life."
The White House announced that President Joe Biden had been briefed on Wednesday about a possible threat from the ISIS-K (Islamic State in Khorasan province). Biden had mentioned a possible threat to the Kabul airport by ISIS-K when he announced on Tuesday that the US would stick to its plan to complete its withdrawal from Afghanistan by August 31.
Biden had said, "Every day we're on the ground is another day that we know ISIS-K is seeking to target the airport and attack both us and allied forces and innocent civilians."
The Taliban announced on Thursday that the group's members were continuing to provide security outside the Kabul airport.