In the ongoing Afghanistan crisis, another US drone strike took down an IS-K car bomber where children among civilians were reported to be killed. The drone strike was the second one in the series of drone strikes which was initiated after a suicide bomber bombed the Kabul airport earlier on Thursday last week. The first drone strike came on Saturday which was initiated against an Islamic State “planner”.
Following US President Biden’s promise of “hunting down” the militants of the organization which planned and executed the Kabul Airport explosions, the US military launched another drone strike on Sunday, August 29.
This was the second drone strike by the US following the explosions which rocked the Kabul Airport earlier last week. The explosion’s responsibility was taken by the Islamic State of Khorasan and 13 US troops along with a crowd of Afghanistan citizens died in the attack.
The Facts of the Matter
According to reports, the US forces launched the drone strike to take down an Islamic State suicide car bomber that was preparing for another attack at the Kabul Airport. After the strike, US Centcom’s spokesperson, Bill Urban said that the US carried out the drone strike which was planned to “eliminate an imminent” threat to the Afghanistan capital airport.
“Disrupted an Imminent ISIS-K Threat”
Capt. Urban confirmed that the US successfully hit the target and further added that “secondary explosions” that were witnessed confirmed the fact that the car was laden with explosive material.
“We are still assessing the results of this strike, which we know disrupted an imminent ISIS-K threat to the airport. We know that there were substantial and powerful subsequent explosions resulting from the destruction of the vehicle, indicating a large amount of explosive material inside..” read the US Centcom’s statement.
The drone strike comes after US intelligence was reported to have its eyes on “specific, credible” threats aimed at the Kabul airport.
US Monitoring “Specific, Credible” Threats
US intelligence had earlier claimed that it is anticipating further attacks and have their eyes on “specific” and “credible” threats aimed at the Kabul airport. Earlier on Saturday last week, Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby was quoted by reporters saying, “We certainly are prepared and would expect future attempts. We’re monitoring these threats, very, very specifically, virtually in real time.”
Children Among Reported Casualties
Meanwhile, after the drone strikes, news agency Al Jazeera reported that the second drone strike also caused several casualties including children. Citing witnesses, the news agency reported that at least 6 civilians, including 3 children, died after the Sunday drone strike.
“Would be Deeply Saddened by..”: US Central Command
While the US has not confirmed nor denied civilian casualties, the Centcom’s statement can be inferred to be indicating loss of civilians. Stating that the secondary explosion indicated a large amount of explosives in the cars, the Centcom also said that this “may have caused additional casualties. It further added that its “investigating further” and stated that it “would be deeply saddened by any potential loss of innocent life.”
Over 1,14,000 Troops Airlifted Since Kabul Fell
With the US racing against time to conclude its troop withdrawal and evacuations, US military officials have stated that Islamic State still remains a credible danger and attacks will continue to mount. So far, the US has airlifted over 1,14,000 American Troops and allied foreigners since August 15, the day the Afghanistan capital fell and was taken under the control of the Taliban.