Taliban kill leader of ISIS cell responsible for Kabul airport suicide bombing

Kabul, Afghanistan - The Taliban reportedly killed the leader of the Islamic State cell believed to be responsible for a devastating suicide attack on Kabul airport in August 2021, according to reports on Tuesday.

The Taliban reportedly killed the leader of the Islamic State cell believed to be responsible for a devastating suicide attack on Kabul airport in August 2021.
The Taliban reportedly killed the leader of the Islamic State cell believed to be responsible for a devastating suicide attack on Kabul airport in August 2021.  © Wakil KOHSAR / AFP

The US government came to this conclusion on the basis of intelligence information, media outlets including the New York Times reported, citing high-ranking government officials.

More than 170 Afghans and 13 US soldiers were killed in the attack, which occurred during the international military evacuations from Afghanistan.

It is unclear whether the Taliban targeted the IS leader, who was not named, or if he fell victim to one of the battles between Taliban and IS fighters, the New York Times reported.

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The broadcaster CBS quoted an unnamed government official as saying that the US was not involved, and that the Taliban were solely responsible for the IS leader's death.

Catastrophic Kabul attack amid Afghanistan withdrawal

On August 26, 2021, a suicide bomber blew himself up by one of Kabul airport's gates amid a fraught evacuation operation for people trying to flee Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. Islamic State claimed responsibility for the bombing.

US President Joe Biden, who ordered the withdrawal, took harsh criticism for the chaotic departure of US forces from Afghanistan after 20 years.

In a recently published report on the operation, however, the Biden administration largely blamed his predecessor Donald Trump for the difficulties encountered.

Cover photo: Wakil KOHSAR / AFP

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