Afghanistan: Rockets target Kabul airport after children killed in US air strike

30 August 2021, 12:10 | Updated: 30 August 2021, 15:00

US troops at Kabul airport
US troops at Kabul airport. Picture: Alamy

By Patrick Grafton-Green

Several rockets were fired at Kabul's international airport on Monday, the day before the deadline for American troops to withdraw from Afghanistan.

The US says it intercepted as many as five rockets believed to have been fired from a car in the capital's Chahr-e-Shaheed neighbourhood.

The four-door car reportedly had six home-made rocket tubes mounted where the back seat should be.

READ MORE: UK seeks safe passage assurances after last troops leave Afghanistan

READ MORE: Minister defends Afghanistan evacuation efforts amid anger over those left behind

The so-called Islamic State group's offshoot in Afghanistan, Isis-K, claimed responsibility.

Local resident Jaiuddin Khan said: "I was inside the house with my children and other family members, suddenly there were some blasts. We jumped into the house compound and lay on the ground."

The rockets landed across town in Kabul's Salim Karwan neighbourhood, striking residential apartment blocks, witnesses said.

The neighbourhood is nearly two miles from the airport.

Stephen Kinnock calls for Raab's resignation

There were no reports of any casualties.

In Washington, the White House issued a statement saying officials briefed President Joe Biden on "the rocket attack at Hamid Karzai International Airport" in Kabul.

"The president was informed that operations continue uninterrupted at HKIA, and has reconfirmed his order that commanders redouble their efforts to prioritise doing whatever is necessary to protect our forces on the ground," the statement said.

The US military did not respond to requests for comment.

The rockets did not halt the steady stream of US military C-17 cargo jets taking off and landing at the airport.

UK troops and diplomats arrive home after 20-year Afghanistan campaign

Planes were taking off roughly every 20 minutes at one point on Monday morning.

It comes after Isis-K launched a devastating suicide bombing at one of the airport gates last week that killed at least 169 Afghans and 13 US service members.

Some of members of the group were freed as the Taliban released prisoners across the country during its takeover.

On Sunday, a US drone strike blew up a vehicle carrying Islamic State suicide bombers before they could attack the ongoing military evacuation at Kabul's airport, American officials said.

An Afghan official said three children were killed in the strike.

How did we get the evacuation from Kabul so wrong?

US Navy Captain Bill Urban, a spokesman for the American military's Central Command, acknowledged the reports of civilian casualties.

"We would be deeply saddened by any potential loss of innocent life," he said.

The US carried out another drone strike elsewhere in the country on Saturday which it said killed two Islamic State members.

By Tuesday, the country is set to conclude the evacuation of more than 114,000 Afghans and foreigners and withdraw the last of its troops, nearly 20 years after the initial invasion that followed the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Afghans remain fearful of the Taliban returning to the oppressive rule for which it was once known.

There have been sporadic reports of killings and other abuses as the group swept across the country and seized power.

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Hungary's Kevin Csoboth, bottom, shoots past Scotland's goalkeeper Angus Gunn, top, during a Group A match between Scotland and Hungary at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Stuttgart, Germany, Sunday, June 23, 2024. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

Scotland knocked out of Euro 2024 following Hungary's 100th-minute goal as collision sees star stretchered off

Elections betting scandal widens to include 'family and friends' of senior Tories

Election betting scandal widens to include 'family and friends' of senior Tories

Terror in Russia: Gunmen open fire at two synagogues killing six police before slitting priest's throat at Orthodox Church

Terror in Russia: Gunmen open fire at synagogue and Orthodox churches killing six police officers

Detective who probed Nicola Bulley offers services to Jay Slater's family as search for teen enters its second week

Investigator who probed Nicola Bulley offers services to Jay Slater's family as search targets remote buildings

M50 motorway Dublin

'Miracle' as schoolboy, 12, 'lucky to be alive' after toppling from toilet of moving coach onto motorway

Exclusive
'I just had to disappear': Carol Vorderman shares how grief led her to runaway following death of co-star Richard Whiteley

'I just had to disappear': Carol Vorderman shares how grief led her to runaway following death of Richard Whiteley

Alan Hansan

Ex-Liverpool captain Alan Hansen discharged from hospital

Manchester Airport boss apologises after 'power spike' sees mass cancellations as he gives flight status update

Flights from Manchester Airport 'expected to resume' on Sunday as travel boss apologises for mass cancellations

The highest temperatures of the summer are expected this week

Yellow heat-health alerts signal warm weather for most of England as temperatures to hit 30C

Passengers have been queuing for hours at Manchester Airport

All flights from two terminals at Manchester Airport cancelled as passengers urged not to travel

Amanda Abbington and Giovanni Pernice

Amanda Abbington forced to call police after being bombarded with death threats from troll fans of Giovanni Pernice

Exclusive
Robert Buckland has split from the PM and Home Secretary

Senior Tory splits from PM and Home Secretary as he calls for those involved in betting scandal to be suspended

James Cleverly joined LBC for Sunday with Lewis Goodall

Conservative candidate who described Rwanda policy as ‘crap’ did so to ‘shock his audience’, Home Secretary says

Jay

Jay Slater's father and brother make emotional pleas for return of the missing teenager

Michael Gove

Betting scandal as bad for Tories as Partygate, Michael Gove warns

42C heat has hit Europe this week

Extreme weather hits holiday hotspots in Europe with 42C heat and ‘meteo-tsunami’ as Brits warned before booking trip