- ISIS claims attack
- 145 Sikhs, 15 Hindu had providential escape
- Would nether forget nor forgive: Biden
- Evacuation would continue unabated
- No evidence of Taliban hand behind blasts
Kabul: Two powerful explosions on Thursday outside Kabul airport killed at least 85 persons, 13 of them US nationals. More than 140 persons were wounded, some of them are in critical condition. This occurred hours after the US, Britain and Australian intelligence sources alerted that the terrorist may strike any time. US president Joe Biden said the US would neither forget nor forgive the atrocity and would hunt down the criminals and make them pay. He also said there is no evidence to say that the Taliban are behind the blasts. The US government said at least 13 US service members, including 12 marines and one Navy medic, were killed. The ISIS claimed that it was the act by its operatives. Biden said the airlift of the US citizens and others would be completed by Tuesday, the deadline decided upon earlier.
Taliban’s spokesman Habihullah Mujahid said his organization had nothing to do with the blasts. He said before the blasts took place that the intelligence source have alerted about an imminent blasts, but ruled out that possibility. After the blasts took place he said between 13 and 20 persons were killed and 52 persons were wounded.
The dastardly attack was carried out by suicide squads of Islamic State group. One of the suicide bombers struck people standing in knee-deep wastewater canal under the sweltering sun, throwing bodies into the fetid water. The bodies were seen lying in a canal outside Kabul airport. The other bomber exploded at a hotel near the airport. People who supported the US forces and the governments during the last twenty years are desperate to leave the country. They gathered at the airport in large numbers. When a crowd was trying to enter the airport, the suicide bomber struck.
Islamic State of Iraq(ISIS), an enemy of Taliban and the western countries, has claimed that the explosions were planned by it. Biden told reporters that he had asked the Pentagon to prepare a plan to attack the ISIS. General Frank Mckenzie, head of US Central command, said US commanders were on alert for more attacks by Islamic State including possibly rocket or vehicle-borne bombs targeting the airport. Some intelligence inputs are being shared by the Taliban, the General said, adding that he believed “some attacks have been thwarted by them.”
About 145 Sikhs and 15 Hindus who are citizens of Afghanistan were trying to get out of the country. Hours before the explosions took place they were standing at the entrance gate to get into the airport. After waiting for some time they went to Gurdwara to spend the day there. Had they continued to wait there they would have been killed, according to Manjinder Singh Sirsa, president of Delhi Gurdwara Management Committee.