| 9 December 2023, Saturday |

Kabul airport attack ‘mastermind’ killed by Taliban, US officials say

According to US sources, the Taliban have executed an Islamic State member who was the “mastermind” behind a suicide bombing at Kabul’s international airport in 2021 that killed 13 US troops and dozens of civilians during the country’s chaotic retreat.

The incident occurred on August 26, 2021, while US soldiers were attempting to assist Americans and Afghans fleeing in the chaotic wake of the Taliban’s takeover, and it added to America’s sense of failure after 20 years of war.

“He was a key ISIS-K official directly involved in plotting operations like Abbey Gate, and now is no longer able to plot or conduct attacks,” White House spokesperson John Kirby said in a statement, referring to the Abbey Gate entrance to the Kabul airport where the blast occurred. He did not name the official.

The Afghan affiliate of Islamic State, known as Islamic State Khorasan or ISIS-K, after an old name of the region, is an enemy of the Taliban. Fighters loyal to Islamic State first appeared in eastern Afghanistan in 2014 and later made inroads in other areas.

  • Reuters