The US military said Friday it had carried out a drone strike against a “planner” of the Islamic State-Khorasan, the group which claimed credit for the deadly suicide bombing at Kabul airport.
“The unmanned airstrike occurred in the Nangahar Province of Afghanistan. Initial indications are that we killed the target,” said Captain Bill Urban of the Central Command.
“We know of no civilian casualties,” he added in a statement.
US forces helping to evacuate Afghans desperate to flee Taliban rule were on alert for more attacks on Friday after at least one Islamic State suicide bomber killed 170 people including 13 US soldiers outside the gates of Kabul airport.
Two blasts and gunfire rocked the area outside the airport on Thursday evening, witnesses said. Video shot by Afghan journalists showed dozens of bodies strewn around a canal on the edge of the airport.
The Taliban said the two blasts killed between 13 and 20 people. A health official in the previous government said the count is at least 85.
President Joe Biden has vowed to “hunt” down the terrorists and make them “pay” for the deadly attacks outside the Kabul airport in which 13 US service members were killed and 18 others wounded.
Here are the LIVE Updates on Afghanistan-Taliban crisis:
US forces helping evacuate Afghans desperate to flee Taliban rule were on alert for more attacks on Friday after an Islamic State suicide bombing outside Kabul airport killed at least 92 people, including 13 U.S service members.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the United States believes there are still “specific, credible” threats against the airport after the bombing at one of its gates.”We certainly are prepared and would expect future attempts,” Kirby told reporters in Washington.
The British government acknowledged that more can be done to help and assist Afghan nationals and their families settle in Britain as they escape from Afghanistan following its takeover by the Taliban.
Britain earlier announced plans to welcome up to 5,000 Afghans fleeing the Taliban during the first year of a new resettlement programme that will prioritise women, girls and religious and other minorities.
“Approximately only 5% of councils have declined to sign up to our relocation and assistance scheme and close to a third of councils have already stepped up to support new arrivals, but we know there is more that can be done for those that have risked their lives supporting us”, a UK government spokesperson said in an emailed statement late on Friday.
“This is why we are calling on all councils who have not yet come forward with a firm offer of support to help Afghan nationals and their families as they build a new life here in safety”, the spokesperson said.
France ended its air evacuations from Afghanistan late Friday after bringing around 3,000 people out of the country, Defence Minister Florence Parly announced.
“Operation Apagan, begun on August 15 at the request of the president, ended this evening. In less than two weeks, the French military has brought some 3,000 people to safety, including more than 2,600 Afghans,” Parly tweeted.