As the chaos in Kabul, Afghanistan unfolds following two deadly bombings at the airport amid US evacuations, world leaders are speaking out to condemn the “cowardly” attacks and “despicable” perpetrators.
The bombings took place outside the Hamid Karzai International Airport’s Abbey Gate and the nearby Baron Hotel.
Gen. Frank McKenzie Jr., commander of US Central Command, confirmed in a press briefing that the attacks — by ISIS fighters — killed 12 US service members and injured another 15.
Afghan officials said at least 60 people were killed and 140 injured.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was updated on the situation following the explosions, according to his office, and later told the media that those responsible for the attack were “despicable.”
“We extend our condolences both to the United States of America and the people of Afghanistan,” he said, adding that the UK plans to continue with their evacuations “up until the last moment.”
While in Ireland on a diplomatic visit, French President Emmanuel Macron vowed France would work with “our American allies,” in the aftermath of the attacks.
“We will closely coordinate on the issues to be dealt with in the near future, military cooperation, migration issues and cooperate with UN Security Council, because in the coming days and weeks we will have to define the course of the mandate of the United Nations,” he said, adding, “The coming hours will remain extremely dangerous in Kabul and around the airport.”
President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen condemned the attacks on Twitter, calling the international community to work together.
“I strongly condemn the cowardly and inhuman attacks on Kabul airport. It is essential to do everything to ensure the safety of people at the airport. The international community must work closely together to avoid a resurgence of terrorism in Afghanistan and beyond,” she wrote.
While she has yet to publicly speak on the attacks, German Chancellor Angela Merkel reportedly canceled her planned trip to Israel due to the situation in Afghanistan.
Heiko Maas, the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Germany, strongly condemned the bombings in a series of tweets, while offering his condolences to the families of the victims, particularly the US Marines.
Maas added that while their military evacuation is complete, Germany is “working flat out to create new exit options – whether via civil flights or overland routes to neighboring countries – in order to enable the remaining local workers and people who are particularly at risk to leave the country,” according to a translation.
Canada has also announced the end of their efforts to evacuate people out of Kabul, after bringing approximately 3,700 to safety, acting Chief of Defense Staff Gen. Wayne Eyre told the Associated Press.
“We stayed in Afghanistan for as long as we could. We were amongst the last to cease evacuations operations,” Eyre said, pointing to the Taliban’s tight perimeter around the airport. “We wish we could have stayed longer and rescued everyone who was so desperate to leave. That we could not is truly heartbreaking, but the circumstances on the ground rapidly deteriorated.”
With Post Wires