WASHINGTON: The Taliban administration has murdered the alleged planner of a massive suicide bomb attack at Kabul airport in 2021, according to the White House on Tuesday.
On August 26, 2021, a bomber detonated near the airport’s fence as people attempted to depart Afghanistan. The explosion killed 170 Afghans as well as 13 US servicemen who were preparing the airport for the tragic evacuation.

It was one of the deadliest explosions in Afghanistan in recent years, prompting widespread condemnation of President Joe Biden’s plan to withdraw American forces from the country nearly 20 years after the US invasion.

The commander of the Daesh cell that organized the attack was slain by Taliban authorities, according to White House national security spokesperson John Kirby.

This image from a video supplied by the Department of Defense shows US Marines walking around the scene at Abbey Gate at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, on August 26, 2021, after a suicide bomber detonated an explosive. (AP)
“He was a key Daesh-K official directly involved in plotting operations like Abbey Gate, and is now no longer able to plot or conduct attacks,” Kirby said, referring to the location outside the airport where the attacks occurred.

ISIS-K stands for Daesh Khorasan, the group’s branch in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
“He was killed in a Taliban operation,” Kirby stated, without going into any detail.
The withdrawal, which is set to complete on August 30, 2021, saw Taliban fighters push away Western-trained Afghan forces in mere weeks, forcing the remaining US troops to flee to Kabul’s airport.

Over 120,000 people were evacuated from the country in a matter of days thanks to an unparalleled military airlift operation.

Biden has long defended his choice to leave Afghanistan, which critics say contributed to the catastrophic collapse of Afghan forces and allowed the Taliban to reclaim power two decades after their first regime was deposed.

Nothing “would have changed the trajectory” of the leave, and “ultimately, President Biden refused to send another generation of Americans to fight a war that should have ended for the United States long ago,” according to a report to Congress earlier this month from the White House National Security Council.

According to a recent Washington Post report based on leaked Pentagon documents, the US believes that since the pullout, Afghanistan has become a “staging ground” for the Daesh group.

“We have made clear to the Taliban that it is their responsibility to ensure that they provide no safe haven to terrorists, whether Al-Qaeda or Daesh-K,” Kirby said in a statement Tuesday.

“We have made good on the President’s pledge to establish an over-the-horizon capacity to monitor potential terrorist threats, not just from Afghanistan, but from anywhere in the world where that threat has metastasized, as we have done in Somalia and Syria,” he continued.

The Taliban and Daesh have long been at odds in Afghanistan, and experts have identified the jihadist group as the new Afghan government’s greatest security problem in the future.





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