Multiple fatalities have been reported after two explosions outside Kabul airport. Taliban officials say at least 13 people have died, with the Russian Foreign Ministry say the suicide attack killed at least two people and wounded 15. The Pentagon confirmed there have been a number of US and civilian casualties.
Here’s what we know so far
A Pentagon spokesperson confirmed the bombing has resulted in a number of US and civilian casualties and was the result of a “complex attack”.
One US serviceman is reportedly seriously injured and US casualties are expected to rise, according to reports.
The BBC’s Nasfiseh Kohnvard tweeted: “Those inside Kabul airport were warned of a possible rocket attack. Soldiers ask people to take cover, a source inside the airport tells me.”
Local residents are directing traffic outside the emergency hospital so those who are injured can enter safely.
US president Joe Biden was briefed on the explosion by an official.
No.10 spokesperson said: “The Prime Minister has been updated on the situation at the airport in Kabul and will chair a COBR later this afternoon.”
Two explosions went off near Baron Hotel outside the airport – the place where UK troops have been processing evacuees.
Taliban updates death toll to at least 13 people including children.
All US diplomatic personnel safely accounted for, but three were injured. No UK or French nationals were among the injured.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has said a suicide attack has killed at least two people and wounded 15. This was the first official report of casualties from the explosion.
The Taliban say at least 11 have been killed, including foreigners and children, and that members of the Taliban have been injured. US officials say there is no information about US citizens yet, and there are injuries about Afghans.
A witness told AP news agency that several people appear to have died and others have lost limbs.
The injured are now being attended to outside the airport by Abbey gate.
The blast is believed to have been triggered by a suicide bomber.
US official says initial reports are that two or three US service people were injured in the attack.
UK defence ministry says it is working urgently to establish details.
Defence minister Ben Wallace said: “We are working urgently to establish what has happened in Kabul and its impact on the ongoing evacuation effort.
“Our primary concern remains the safety of our personnel, British citizens and the citizens in Afghanistan. We are in close contact with our US and other Nato allies at an operational level on the immediate response to this incident.”
There were breaking reports of ongoing gunfire after the explosion at the airport.
— Sudhir Chaudhary (@sudhirchaudhary) August 26, 2021
Afghans had been crowding around the airport since the Taliban took control of the country, in a desperate bid to leave Afghanistan.
The explosion followed warnings from the western officials that an attack could be imminent.
Countries – including the US and UK – warned people not to go to the airport in case there was a suicide bombing.
The biggest threat was thought to be from Isis-K, a branch of the Islamic State which is known for its suicide bombing attacks.
The Taliban and Isis are enemies.
Isis are known to be furious at the way the Taliban negotiated with the US to get into power, and were expected to attack before the withdrawal of western troops to undermine both the Taliban leaders in power – who promised a safe evacuation process to the west – and Nato.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.