Nine family members, including six children, were killed in a drone strike that targeted ISIS-K suicide bombers headed for the Kabul International airport on Sunday.
In the second airstrike since Friday U.S. military forces conducted a “self-defense” attack to “eliminate an imminent ISIS-K threat” to Hamad Karzai International airport on Sunday, hours after the U.S. State Department instructed American citizens to flee the airport and surrounding areas “due to a specific, credible threat.”
“Our commanders informed me that an attack is highly likely in the next 24-36 hours,” President Biden warned a day prior, adding that the situation was “extremely dangerous, and the threat of terrorist attacks on the airport remains high.”
“We are confident we successfully hit the target. Significant secondary explosions from the vehicle indicated the presence of a substantial amount of explosive material,” U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) announced after the airstrike early Sunday. ”We are assessing the possibilities of civilian casualties, though we have no indications at this time.”
According to a report, the civilian casualty count was inaccurate. CNN claimed that an “an ordinary family” of nine with no ties to any terrorist organizations was killed in the blast.
“We are not ISIS or Daesh and this was a family home — where my brothers lived with their families,” an alleged family member told the network.
Late Sunday night, CENTCOM released a new statement about the attack. “We are aware of reports of civilian casualties following our strike on a vehicle in Kabul today,” spokesperson Capt. Bill Urban responded.
“We are still assessing the results of this strike, which we know disrupted an imminent ISIS-K threat to the airport,” he continued. “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 that may have caused additional casualties.”
“It is unclear what may have happened, and we are investigating further,” the statement concluded. “We would be deeply saddened by any potential loss of innocent life.”