At least 60 Afghans and 12 U.S. service members were killed at the Kabul airport Thursday when two blasts ripped through crowds trying to enter the American-controlled facility, disrupting the final push of the U.S.-led evacuation effort.
A suicide bomb attack at the airport’s Abbey Gate was followed by an assault by gunmen, officials said. Another bomb attack took place nearby, at a hotel outside the airport, officials said. Fifteen U.S. service members were injured, the Pentagon said.
The attack on U.S. personnel marked the deadliest day for the U.S. military in Afghanistan since 2011. U.S. officials attributed the attacks to Islamic State’s regional affiliate. Islamic State claimed responsibility in a report posted by its Amaq news agency.
President Biden is set to speak about Afghanistan at 5 p.m. Thursday following the explosions, the White House said.
The U.S. plans to continue with its evacuation of U.S. citizens and allied Afghans, Marine Corps Gen. Frank McKenzie, commander of U.S. Central Command, told reporters Thursday. He said the U.S. estimates that around 1,000 Americans remain in Afghanistan.