Saturday, September 18, 2021

5 rockets fired at Kabul airport, intercepted by defence

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Several rockets were fired towards Kabul’s airport early on Monday, local broadcaster ToloNews reported, citing witnesses.

Rockets were fired from Chairchanah, in Kabul’s north, according to the report.

CNN reported that at least five missiles were fired towards the airport, citing U.S. Government officials.

There was no initial information on potential casualties or damage.

The airport’s aerial defence system was activated, triggering a machine gun that destroys approaching objects before they strike.

It had been tested only a few weeks ago.

Videos shared on social media showed a burning car, apparently hit by one of the rockets.

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The car’s remains were covered in debris and its tyres had melted.

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It was not possible to verify whether the missiles had been fired from the vehicle.

CNN reported that an imminent threat to the Afghan capital’s airport had been removed.

The U.S. President Joe Biden was notified of the attack, according to White House spokesperson Jen Psaki.

He was also informed that operations at the airport would continue without interruption.

Commanders at the airport are to increase their efforts to protect troops, according to Biden.

Biden had warned on Sunday of possible further attacks around Kabul airport as Washington prepared to pull out its final troops.

The U.S. military carried out an airstrike on a car on Sunday.

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Doing so averted an imminent threat to the airport from the terrorist group known as called Islamic State Khorasan, or ISIS-K.

“Significant secondary explosions’’ after the strike indicated the vehicle contained a large quantity of explosives, U.S. officials said.

The situation in Kabul remained volatile after ISIS-K claimed responsibility for Thursday’s airport bombing that killed dozens of people, including 13 U.S. soldiers.

The total number of deaths was not clear.

Broadcaster CNN said there were up to 200.

CNN also reported that Washington had completed its evacuation mission, with U.S. troops still planning to depart from Kabul by Tuesday.

Some 114,000 people have been airlifted from Afghanistan since mid-August, according to the White House.

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dpa/NAN

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