White House confirms Kabul airport rocket attack, says ops ‘uninterrupted’

Updated on Aug 30, 2021 12:06 PM IST

According to Reuters, a US official said the rockets were fired at the airport but were intercepted by a missile defence system. The official also said that it was not clear whether all the rockets were brought down by the defence system and there have been no American casualties yet.

According to Reuters, a US official said that five rockets were fired at the airport but were intercepted by a missile defence system.(AP Photo)
According to Reuters, a US official said that five rockets were fired at the airport but were intercepted by a missile defence system.(AP Photo)
Written by Harshit Sabarwal | Edited by Meenakshi Ray, New Delhi

Hours after five rockets were fired at the Kabul airport on Monday with just a day left for the United States to pull out its troops from Afghanistan, the White House confirmed the attack and said operations continue to remain uninterrupted at the airport. “National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan and Chief of Staff Ron Klain have briefed the President on the rocket attack at HKIA (Hamid Karzai International Airport). The President was informed that operations continue uninterrupted at HKIA, and has reconfirmed his order that commanders redouble their efforts to prioritize doing whatever is necessary to protect our forces on the ground,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement.

Also Read| 5 rockets fired at Kabul airport, intercepted by defence system: Report

According to Reuters, a US official said the rockets were fired at the airport but were intercepted by a missile defence system. The official also said that it was not clear whether all the rockets were brought down by the defence system and there have been no American casualties yet.

However, local media reports have claimed that the rockets struck different parts of Afghanistan’s capital and the attack was mounted from the back of a vehicle. Witnesses, on the condition of anonymity, told the Associated Press that rockets struck the Salim Karwan neighbourhood in Kabul and they were immediately followed by gunfire.

Monday’s attack comes a day after US forces on Sunday carried out a drone strike that blew up a vehicle carrying several suicide bombers from Afghanistan’s Islamic State affiliate. The vehicle was aiming to attack the Kabul airport amid the ongoing evacuations. While an Afghan official said that three children were killed in the drone strike, CNN reported nine members of a family died in the attack.

Also Read| Several children killed in US drone strike on IS in Afghanistan: Reports

Afghanistan saw heart-wrenching scenes on Thursday after more than 160 Afghans and 13 United States military personnel were killed in an Islamic State suicide bomb attack outside the Kabul airport. The deceased US military personnel included 11 Marines, one Navy sailor, and one Army soldier while 18 other US service members were also injured on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the United States and its allies have so far evacuated 114,400 people including vulnerable Afghans and foreign nationals as the war-ravaged country fell into the hands of the Taliban on August 15. US officials have said evacuation operations will continue on Monday, prioritising people deemed at extreme risk.

(With agency inputs)





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