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Death toll At least 95 Afghans killed in horror bombings outside Kabul airport

Evacuation flights have resumed ahead of the US deadline of August 31.

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Wounded Afghans lie on a bed at a hospital after a deadly explosions outside the airport in Kabul (AP)

Wounded Afghans lie on a bed at a hospital after a deadly explosions outside the airport in Kabul (AP)

Wounded Afghans lie on a bed at a hospital after a deadly explosions outside the airport in Kabul (AP)

At least 95 Afghans were killed in Thursday’s suicide bombings outside Kabul’s international airport, officials said.

Afghan and US officials had earlier said the bombings killed at least 60 Afghans and 13 US troops, in the deadliest day for US forces in Afghanistan since August 2011.

The US government has said further attempted attacks are expected ahead of the Tuesday deadline for foreign troops to leave, ending America’s longest war.

Kabul residents said several flights took off on Friday morning, while the anxious crowd outside the airport was as large as ever.

In one location, dozens of Taliban members with heavy weapons about 500 metres from the airport were preventing anyone from venturing forward.

Earlier, in an emotional speech in Washington DC, US president Joe Biden blamed the incident on the affiliate of the so-called Islamic State in Afghanistan (Isis-K), a far more radical force than the Taliban militants who seized power less than two weeks ago.

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Afghans lie on beds at a hospital after they were wounded in the deadly attacks outside the airport in Kabul (AP)

Afghans lie on beds at a hospital after they were wounded in the deadly attacks outside the airport in Kabul (AP)

Afghans lie on beds at a hospital after they were wounded in the deadly attacks outside the airport in Kabul (AP)

Mr Biden said: “We will rescue the Americans; we will get our Afghan allies out, and our mission will go on.”

But despite intense pressure to extend Tuesday’s deadline, he has cited the threat of terrorist attacks as a reason to keep to his plan.

The Taliban, back in control of Afghanistan two decades after they were ousted in a US-led invasion following the 9/11 attacks, insists on the deadline.

In February 2020, the Trump administration struck an agreement with the Taliban that called for it to halt attacks on Americans in exchange for the removal of all US troops and contractors by May 2021.

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Smoke rises from the deadly explosion (AP)

Smoke rises from the deadly explosion (AP)

Smoke rises from the deadly explosion (AP)

Mr Biden announced in April he would have them out by September.

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While the US on Thursday said more than 100,000 people have been safely evacuated from Kabul, as many as 1,000 Americans and tens of thousands more Afghans are struggling to leave in one of history’s largest airlifts.

General Frank McKenzie, the US Central Command chief overseeing the evacuation, said about 5,000 people are awaiting flights on the airfield.

The scenes at the airport, with people standing knee-deep in sewage and families thrusting documents and even young children towards US troops behind razor wire, have horrified many around the world as efforts continue to help people escape.

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Satellite image shows Kabul International Airport and the location of an explosion near the Abbey Gate (AP)

Satellite image shows Kabul International Airport and the location of an explosion near the Abbey Gate (AP)

Satellite image shows Kabul International Airport and the location of an explosion near the Abbey Gate (AP)

But those chances are fading fast for many. Some US allies have said they are ending evacuation efforts, in part to give the US time to wrap up its evacuation work before getting 5,000 of its troops out by Tuesday.

The UK said its evacuations from Afghanistan will end within hours, and the main British processing centre for eligible Afghans has been closed.

The Spanish government said it has ended its evacuation operation.

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Children accompanied by their families evacuated from Kabul, Afghanistan, walk through the terminal before boarding a bus after they arrived at Washington Dulles International Airport (AP)

Children accompanied by their families evacuated from Kabul, Afghanistan, walk through the terminal before boarding a bus after they arrived at Washington Dulles International Airport (AP)

Children accompanied by their families evacuated from Kabul, Afghanistan, walk through the terminal before boarding a bus after they arrived at Washington Dulles International Airport (AP)

Untold thousands of Afghans, especially ones who had worked with the US and other Western countries, are now in hiding from the Taliban, fearing retaliation despite the group’s offer of full amnesty.

The militant group has claimed it has become more moderate since its harsh rule from 1996 to 2001, when it largely confined women to their homes, banned television and music and held public executions.

But Afghans in Kabul and elsewhere have reported that some Taliban members are barring girls from attending school and going door-to-door in search of people who had worked with western forces.

No-one knows how effective the Taliban will be at combating the Sunni extremists of IS, who have links to the group’s more well-known affiliate in Syria and Iraq and have carried out a series of brutal attacks in Afghanistan, mainly targeting its Shia Muslim minority.


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