US issues fresh terror alert as Kabul attack death toll nears 100
Kabul, Aug 27 (EFE).- The United States Friday issued a fresh terror alert a day after Islamic State suicide bombers killed nearly 100 people, including American soldiers, at the Kabul airport, crowded with desperate Afghans fleeing Taliban rule.
An official source told EFE that the death toll had mounted to 95 and could rise further because some of the 150 injured persons in the two blasts and gunfire outside the airport on Thursday were critical.
The source could not divulge more details due to the “sensitivity” of the matter.
However, he did not clarify if the figures included the 13 US soldiers killed in the attack and 18 other US troops wounded near the airport.
The attack took place days after governments of several countries had warned of the possibility of attacks at the airport, where thousands of people had thronged to try and board evacuation flights since the Taliban took control of the Afghan capital on Aug.15.
The attack left images of dozens of blood-soaked and dismembered bodies in a canal close to the airport.
Civilians were trying for days to get past security forces and enter the airport to flee the country.
Hours later, the Islamic State terror group claimed the attack.
However, it assumed the responsibility for just one of the explosions, carried out by one of its fighters who passed unnoticed through the security checks of the US forces and Taliban militia around the capital.
Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid strongly condemned the “attack on civilians.”
He stressed that it had taken place in an area where the US forces were in charge of security.
It was the first terror attack since the Taliban took control of the country.
It comes despite rigorous security checks installed by the Islamist militia around the city.
On Friday, several countries, including Spain and Australia, ended their evacuation operations in Kabul.
The US military, overseeing the security inside the airport for foreign evacuation, braced for more attacks as the Aug.31 deadline to evacuate people from the country draws close.
The US military asked the Afghan media on Friday to avoid going to the airport due to the “active threats” in the area.
“We are asking all our friends in the Afghan media to please avoid the Kabul Airport for the time being. There are active threats and the situation is currently not safe,” a source in the military told EFE.
Faced with the risk of more attacks, the Taliban blocked roads to the airport from Friday morning.
Some Taliban gunmen controlled the traffic in the vicinity of the airport and were stopping pedestrians who approached the surroundings.
Taliban spokesperson Suhail Shaheen Friday said that the Afghans with legal documents could only travel abroad.