Rocket blast near Kabul airport kills child: Afghan police


Afghan police chief says rocket struck northwest of Kabul’s airport amid US evacuations and warnings of attacks.

An Afghan police chief says a rocket has struck a neighbourhood northwest of Kabul’s international airport amid the US evacuation there, killing a child.

Rashid, the Kabul police chief who goes by one name, told The Associated Press that the rocket struck Khuwja Bughra neighbourhood on Sunday afternoon.

No group immediately claimed the attack.

Al Jazeera’s Charles Stratford, reporting from Kabul, said people in the neighbourhood also reported that a rocket hit a house.

“It comes at a time of increasing tension here, the closer we get to this evacuation deadline,” he said.

The suspected rocket fire comes as the United States winds down a historic airlift that saw tens of thousands evacuated from Kabul’s international airport, the scene of much of the chaos that engulfed the Afghan capital since the Taliban took over two weeks ago.

After a suicide attack on Thursday claimed by the Islamic State in Khorasan Province, ISKP (ISIS-K), an ISIL affiliate, that killed at least 175 people, the Taliban increased its security around the airfield as the United Kingdom ended its evacuation flights on Saturday.

The Pentagon said Saturday that retaliation drone strikes had killed two “high-level” ISKP targets in eastern Afghanistan, but Biden warned of more attacks from the group.

“The situation on the ground continues to be extremely dangerous, and the threat of terrorist attacks on the airport remains high,” Biden said.

“Our commanders informed me that an attack is highly likely in the next 24-36 hours.”

The US embassy in Kabul later released a warning of credible threats at specific areas of the airport, including access gates.

More to follow.


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