- Title: Smoke seen rising from Kabul Airport
- Date: 30th August 2021
- Summary: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN (AUGUST 30, 2021) (REUTERS) SKYLINE / SMOKE RISING FROM KABUL AIRPORT / VIEW OF AIRPORT AND RUNWAY SMOKE RISING FROM AIRPORT
- Embargoed: 13th September 2021 08:59
- Keywords: Afghanistan Kabul airport Taliban attacks smoke rising
- Location: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN
- City: KABUL, AFGHANISTAN
- Country: Afghanistan
- Topics: Asia / Pacific,Conflicts/War/Peace
- Reuters ID: LVA001ESH1ZRB
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Smoke was seen rising from Kabul Airport on Monday (August 30) as U.S. and allied forces enter the final stage of evacuation from Afghanistan.
The cause of the smoke was not immediately clear.
Earlier on Monday U.S. anti-missile defences intercepted as many as five rockets that were fired at Kabul's airport, a U.S. official said, as the United States rushed to complete its withdrawal from Afghanistan to end its longest war.
Having evacuated about 114,400 people, including foreign nationals and Afghans deemed "at risk", in an effort that began a day before Kabul fell to the Taliban on Aug. 15, U.S. and allied forces are set to complete their own withdrawal by a Tuesday (August 31) deadline agreed with the Islamist militants.
The number of U.S. troops at the airport had fallen below 4,000 over the weekend, as departures became more urgent after an Islamic State suicide bomb attack outside the gates on Thursday (August 26) killed scores of Afghans and 13 U.S. troops.
Afghan media said Monday's rocket attack was launched from the back of a vehicle. The Pajhwok news agency said several rockets struck different parts of the Afghan capital.
Initial reports did not indicate any U.S. casualties from the latest rocket attack, the U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters.
In a statement, the White House said President Joe Biden reconfirmed his order for commanders to do "whatever is necessary to protect our forces on the ground" after he was briefed on the attack. Biden was informed that airport operations continued uninterrupted, it added.
(Production: Paul Warren, Dina Selim)
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