'Threat to Kabul remains 'real' and 'specific', says Pentagon as evacuation deadline nears
New Delhi | Jagran World Desk: The threat to Kabul airport remains "real" and "specific" as the United States moves closer to the August 31 deadline to withdraw foreign troops, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said on Monday (August 30).
"The threat stream is still real, it's still active, and in many cases, it's still specific," Kirby told reporters at a press conference. "We are operating under the assumption that we need to be prepared for future potential threats," he further added.
In the same press conference, US Army Major General Hank Taylor said more than 122,000 people have been evacuated from Kabul so far including 5,400 Americans. "We continue to have the capability to evacuate and fly out those until the very end. We continue to work with the Department of State on that, and continue evacuation and military operations," Taylor said.
Earlier in the day, ISIS claimed a rocket attack on Kabul airport on Monday, as US troops raced to complete their withdrawal from Afghanistan and evacuate allies under the threat of further violence. Several rockets were fired at Kabul's, less than 48 hours before the United States is due to complete its troop withdrawal from Afghanistan.
The White House confirmed there had been a rocket attack directed at the airport on Monday, but said airlift operations there were "uninterrupted". "The President has reconfirmed his order that commanders redouble their efforts to prioritize doing whatever is necessary to protect our forces on the ground," a White House statement said.
Meanwhile, the United States earlier said an airstrike on Sunday (August 29) night had eliminated another threat from the ISIS jihadists. However, it may have also have killed civilians. "We are aware of reports of civilian casualties following our strike on a vehicle in Kabul today," Captain Bill Urban, a US Central Command spokesman, said in a statement. "We would be deeply saddened by any potential loss of innocent life," he added.
(With inputs from ANI)
Posted By: Sugandha Jha