US troops have begun leaving Kabul airport: Pentagon

Gen Taylor says two ISIS-K planners were killed in Friday's drone strike in Nangarhar province


Reuters August 28, 2021
Evacuees board a Boeing C-17 Globemaster III during an evacuation at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, August 23, 2021. PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON:

US troops have begun their withdrawal from Kabul airport, Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby told reporters on Saturday.

At the briefing, US Army Major General William Taylor said two ISIS-K planners were killed and another wounded in Friday's drone strike in Nangarhar province, eastern Afghanistan.

Western forces running the Afghan airlift braced on Saturday for more attacks after the United States launched a drone strike two days after the group claimed a deadly bombing outside Kabul airport.

Among the 92 killed in Thursday's suicide blast, claimed by Afghanistan's Islamic State affiliate, were 13 US service members, the most lethal incident for US troops in Afghanistan in a decade.

"Initial indications are that we killed the target. We know of no civilian casualties," the US military said in a statement earlier in the day, referring to the overnight drone strike.

The White House said the next few days are likely to be the most dangerous of the US evacuation operation that the Pentagon said has taken about 111,000 people out of Afghanistan in the past two weeks

Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby said the United States believes there are still "specific, credible" threats against the airport after the bombing at one of its gates.

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