Seven dead in Kabul airport chaos: Evacuation flights halted after US soldiers shoot dead two armed Afghans while three are run over by taxiing jets and more plunge to their deaths from fuselage - as UN say Taliban have started 'targeted killings'

 At least seven people were killed at Kabul airport on Monday, including two who were shot dead by US troops, three who were run over by taxiing jets and three stowaways who fell from the engines of a US Air Force jet as it fled an airfield of thousands of desperate Afghan nationals hoping to escape. 

The Taliban has taken control of Afghanistan and there is now a frantic race to evacuate the remaining US citizens from the embassy and Afghan refugees before the terror organization encroaches on the airport. The UN reports that the terror group has started 'targeted killings' in the city. 

President Joe Biden - whose days-long silence on the chaos has been deafening - will return to the White House from Camp David on Monday to address the nation at 3.45pm. 


He has been blamed for the fast-escalating catastrophe in Afghanistan after declaring that all US troops would leave the region in April. The US military cleared Bagram in July and since then, it has taken less than a month for the Taliban to take hold. 

Harrowing scenes unfolded at the airport on Monday as terrified and desperate Afghan nationals stormed a CR-17 jet, clinging on to the engines as it took off in a deluded hope it might carry them to safety. Three were filmed falling to their deaths shortly after the plane took off. 

American troops halted evacuation flights for 90 minutes while they cleared the airfield, which had become overrun with thousands of Afghan nationals. 

They used apache helicopters and fired warning shots into the crowds to try to control them. 

Outside the walls of the airport, shots from Taliban fighters rang out. Around the world, the media has been united in its condemnation of Biden's handling of the disaster. 

It's unclear now who America will save from the chaos aside from US citizens and anyone who worked alongside them. 

Biden's National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan did a series of TV interviews on Monday where he said evacuation flights were ongoing, but he skirted criticism for the disaster and said: 'When push came to shove, [the Afghan forces] decided not to step up and fight for their country.'  

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has also come under fire for hightailing out of the country last night, in a helicopter full of cash, according to the Russian embassy. His whereabouts remain unknown. 

Three stowaways are believed to have plunged to their deaths, with footage showing bodies falling from the underside of a hulking USAF transport jet as it climbed into the skies over the fallen city on Monday

Three stowaways are believed to have plunged to their deaths, with footage showing bodies falling from the underside of a hulking USAF transport jet as it climbed into the skies over the fallen city on Monday

Footage from Hamad Karzai airport showed hundreds of people running alongside - and in front of - a US Air Force plane preparing to take off

Footage from Hamad Karzai airport showed hundreds of people running alongside - and in front of - a US Air Force plane preparing to take off

This is the scene inside the CR-17 that left Kabul on Monday as thousands of Afghan nationals stormed the jet trying desperately to get inside. One of the jets that left on Sunday took 800 people and in 2013, the planes were used to evacuate 650 Philippine nationals from a typhoon. It's unclear how many were on board this jet

This is the scene inside the CR-17 that left Kabul on Monday as thousands of Afghan nationals stormed the jet trying desperately to get inside. One of the jets that left on Sunday took 800 people and in 2013, the planes were used to evacuate 650 Philippine nationals from a typhoon. It's unclear how many were on board this jet 

A US soldier points his gun towards and bellows at an Afghan civilian at the Kabul airport on Monday. Two armed Afghans have been killed by American troops at the airport

A US soldier points his gun towards and bellows at an Afghan civilian at the Kabul airport on Monday. Two armed Afghans have been killed by American troops at the airport

Afghan people climb atop a plane as they wait at the Kabul airport in Kabul on Monday

Afghan people climb atop a plane as they wait at the Kabul airport in Kabul on Monday

The Taliban declared victory from the presidential palace on Sunday following a blistering advance across the country. Experts and lawmakers have for months warned the Biden administrations that this was exactly what would happen if they continued with the hasty retreat and entrusted the country to the Afghan National Army. 

One of the terror chieftains proclaimed from the palace, 'Praise God, I was in Guantanamo for eight years', as he sat at the president's table surrounded by henchmen strapped with AK-47s. 

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that the U.S. decision to withdraw had 'accelerated' the crisis that risked creating 'a breeding ground for terror.'

However, the Taliban has been on a charm offensive, pledging that no harm will come to any foreign citizens or embassy staff as it seeks formal recognition from the international community.  

US soldiers stand guard as desperate Afghans try to board flights at Hamid Karzai International Airport

US soldiers stand guard as desperate Afghans try to board flights at Hamid Karzai International Airport

Thousands of civilians rush towards one of the last military planes leaving Kabu
The airport was teeming with desperate civilians trying to flee the Taliban

Thousands of civilians rush towards one of the last military planes leaving Kabul (left) the airport was teeming with desperate civilians trying to flee the Taliban (right)

Footage published by Afghan outlet Aśvaka showed three stowaways falling to the deaths after clinging on to the wheels of a military plane as it took off from Kabul airport

Footage published by Afghan outlet Aśvaka showed three stowaways falling to the deaths after clinging on to the wheels of a military plane as it took off from Kabul airport

Video posted later appeared to show residents collecting the bodies of three stowaways, who reportedly fell from an airborne plane, from a roof in Kabul

Video posted later appeared to show residents collecting the bodies of three stowaways, who reportedly fell from an airborne plane, from a roof in Kabul

Footage showed desperate Afghans trying to climb onto grounded planes at Hamid Karzai airport
People desperately try to flee after the Taliban took Kabul on Sunday

Footage showed desperate Afghans trying to climb onto grounded planes at Kabul's Hamid Karzai airport after the Taliban swept the city

Afghans crowd at the tarmac of the Kabul airport on August 16, 2021, to flee the country as the Taliban were in control of Afghanistan after President Ashraf Ghani fled the country and conceded the insurgents had won the 20-year war

Afghans crowd at the tarmac of the Kabul airport on August 16, 2021, to flee the country as the Taliban were in control of Afghanistan after President Ashraf Ghani fled the country and conceded the insurgents had won the 20-year war

Desperate Afghan civilians attempt to clamber over the barbed wire-topped wall into Hamid Karzai International Airport on Monday

Desperate Afghan civilians attempt to clamber over the barbed wire-topped wall into Hamid Karzai International Airport on Monday

Men climb over a wall into Hamid Karzai International Airport in scenes reminiscent of the chaos in Saigon in 1975

Men climb over a wall into Hamid Karzai International Airport in scenes reminiscent of the chaos in Saigon in 1975

US troops are guarding the airport and have taken over air traffic control, but all non-military flights are grounded
Soldiers fired warning shots in the air to prevent hundreds of civilians running onto the tarmac

US troops are guarding the airport and have taken over air traffic control, but all non-military flights are grounded. Soldiers fired warning shots in the air to prevent hundreds of civilians running onto the tarmac, a US official said

US troops fired shots into the air at Kabul airport today as desperate Afghans climbed up the outside of airbridges trying to flee as the Taliban took control of Afghanistan

US troops fired shots into the air at Kabul airport today as desperate Afghans climbed up the outside of airbridges trying to flee as the Taliban took control of Afghanistan

Video posted social media showed hundreds of people trying to climb the outside of airbridges to board commercial liners grounded in Hamad Karzai airport

 Video posted social media showed hundreds of people trying to climb the outside of airbridges to board commercial liners grounded in Hamad Karzai airport

At least five people have been killed at Kabul airport as thousands of people desperately try to flee the country
Witnesses said it was not clear whether the victims were killed by gunshots or in a stampede

At least five people have been killed at Kabul airport as thousands of people tried desperately to get on flights out of Afghanistan amid increasingly chaotic scenes. Witnesses said it was not clear whether the victims were killed by gunshots or in a stampede

Taliban fighters were seen inside the Afghan parliament on Monday
It came after Taliban officials promised civilians would not be harmed and announced everyone would be allowed to return home from Kabul airport if they decided to stay in the country

Taliban fighters were seen inside the Afghan parliament on Monday after officials promised civilians would not be harmed and announced everyone would be allowed to return home from Kabul airport if they decided to stay in the country

The US Embassy has been evacuated and the American flag lowered, with diplomats relocating to the airport in scenes reminiscent of the evacuation of the embassy of Saigon in 1975. Other Western countries have also closed their missions and are flying out staff and civilians after the Taliban walked into Kabul's presidential palace

The US Embassy has been evacuated and the American flag lowered, with diplomats relocating to the airport in scenes reminiscent of the evacuation of the embassy of Saigon in 1975. Other Western countries have also closed their missions and are flying out staff and civilians after the Taliban walked into Kabul's presidential palace

In a stunning rout, the Taliban seized nearly all of Afghanistan in just over a week, despite the billions of dollars spent by the US and NATO over nearly two decades to build up Afghan security forces

In a stunning rout, the Taliban seized nearly all of Afghanistan in just over a week, despite the billions of dollars spent by the US and NATO over nearly two decades to build up Afghan security forces


Almost all major checkpoints in Kabul were under Taliban control by Monday morning and Afghanistan's Civil Aviation Authority issued an advisory saying the 'civilian side' of the airport had been 'closed until further notice' and that the military controlled the airspace. 

Taliban officials said everyone would be allowed to return home from Kabul airport if they decide to stay in the country and promised civilians would not be harmed. The group previously said westerners would be allowed to leave the country but that Afghans would be barred from departing. 

US troops are guarding the airport and have taken over air traffic control, but all non-military flights are grounded. Early Monday morning, flight-tracking data showed no immediate commercial flights over the country. 

In the capital, a tense calm set in, with most people hiding in their homes as the Taliban deployed fighters at major intersections.

There were scattered reports of looting and armed men knocking on doors and gates, and there was less traffic than usual on eerily quiet streets. Fighters could be seen searching vehicles at one of the city's main squares.

Many fear chaos, after the Taliban freed thousands of prisoners and the police simply melted away, or a return to the kind of brutal rule the Taliban imposed when it was last in power.

They raced to Kabul's international airport, where the 'civilian side' was closed until further notice, according to Afghanistan's Civil Aviation Authority. The military was put in control of the airspace.

Massouma Tajik, a 22-year-old data analyst, described scenes of panic at the airport, where she was hoping to board an evacuation flight.

After waiting six hours, she heard shots from outside, where a crowd of men and women were trying to climb aboard a plane. She said U.S. troops sprayed gas and fired into the air to disperse the crowds after people scaled the walls and swarmed onto the tarmac. Gunfire could be heard in the voice messages she sent to The Associated Press.

Shafi Arifi, who had a ticket to travel to Uzbekistan on Sunday, was unable to board her plane because it was packed with people who had raced across the tarmac and climbed aboard, with no police or airport staff in sight.

'There was no room for us to stand,' said the 24-year-old. 'Children were crying, women were shouting, young and old men were so angry and upset, no one could hear each other. There was no oxygen to breathe.'

After another woman fainted and was carried off the plane, Arifi gave up and went back home. 

Meanwhile, refugees have been massing at the borders as people desperately try to flee Afghanistan before the Taliban's brutal rules are implemented, with pictures from the country's border with Pakistan showing hundreds of people queuing in an attempt to leave.

'Today is a great day for the Afghan people and the mujahideen. They have witnessed the fruits of their efforts and their sacrifices for 20 years,' Mohammad Naeem, the spokesman for the Taliban's political office, told Al Jazeera TV. 'Thanks to God, the war is over in the country.'

A member of Taliban forces inspects the area outside Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul

A member of Taliban forces inspects the area outside Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul

US soldiers stand guard as in the background Afghan people wait at the Kabul airport

US soldiers stand guard as in the background Afghan people wait at the Kabul airport

Smiling Taliban fighters are seen on the back of a vehicle in Kabul on Monday

Smiling Taliban fighters are seen on the back of a vehicle in Kabul on Monday 

A father leads his family towards the airport as crowds of people try to escape Afghanistan on Monday

A father leads his family towards the airport as crowds of people try to escape Afghanistan on Monday

Hundreds of Afghans desperately scaled the walls of Hamid Karzai international airport in Kabul as they try to flee the country

Hundreds of Afghans desperately scaled the walls of Hamid Karzai international airport in Kabul as they try to flee the country

Vehicles are seen on a congested street in Kabul, Afghanistan, in this still image taken from a video uploaded to social media on August 15, 2021
Vehicles are seen on a congested street in Kabul, Afghanistan, in this still image taken from a video uploaded to social media on August 15, 2021
Vehicles are seen on a congested street in Kabul, Afghanistan, in this still image taken from a video uploaded to social media on August 15, 2021

Pictured: Vehicles are seen on a congested street in Kabul, Afghanistan, in these still images taken from a video uploaded to social media on August 15, 2021

US troops are guarding the airport and have taken over air traffic control, but all non-military flights are grounded
Early Monday morning, flight-tracking data showed no immediate commercial flights over the country even as thousands of Afghans flooded Kabul airport

US troops are guarding the airport and have taken over air traffic control, but all non-military flights are grounded. Early Monday morning, flight-tracking data showed no immediate commercial flights over the country even as thousands of Afghans flooded Kabul airport

Desperate civilians try and get into Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul on Monday after the Taliban took over the country

Desperate civilians try and get into Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul on Monday after the Taliban took over the country

Afghans crowd at the tarmac of the Kabul airport on Monday as American Humvees standby

Afghans crowd at the tarmac of the Kabul airport on Monday as American Humvees standby 

President Ghani fled the country on Sunday night as the insurgents encircled the capital - saying he wanted to avoid bloodshed - capping a military victory that saw them capture all cities in just 10 days.

In a Facebook post, Ghani said he had left the country to avoid clashes with the Taliban that would endanger millions of Kabul residents. Some social media users branded Ghani, who did not disclose his location, a coward for leaving them in chaos. Al Jazeera reported he had flown to Uzbekistan, citing his personal bodyguard.

'The Taliban have won with the judgement of their swords and guns, and are now responsible for the honour, property and self-preservation of their countrymen,' Ghani said after fleeing.

Taliban officials said they had received no reports of any clashes anywhere in the country: 'The situation is peaceful,' one official said. The Taliban controlled 90 percent of state buildings and fighters had been told to prevent any damage, the official added.

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who fought in the Soviet-Afghan War during the 1980s and helped ex-chief Mohammad Omar create the Taliban in 1994, has already been installed as the head of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, according to reports in the Arab world.  

Video from Afghanistan's parliament building showed Taliban fighters entering the main chamber today. The grainy footage showed fighters carrying weapons sitting at a table at the head of the chamber under the government's seal, with some smiling and posing for photographs. 

Ghani fled from the country on Sunday as the Islamists entered Kabul virtually unopposed, saying he wanted to avoid bloodshed. Desperate Afghans were seen chasing US military transport aircraft

The evacuation flights took off from Kabul airport on Monday

Desperate Afghans were seen chasing US military transport aircraft as the evacuation flights took off from Kabul airport on Monday

US soldiers take up their positions as they secure the airport in Kabul after the Taliban walked into the capital, forcing President Ashraf Ghani to flee

US soldiers take up their positions as they secure the airport in Kabul after the Taliban walked into the capital, forcing President Ashraf Ghani to flee

Thousands of Afghans gathered at Kabul's Hamid Karzai airport, but all commercial services have been suspended, with only military flights leaving the country as the UK, US and other western countries repatriate their citizens

Thousands of Afghans gathered at Kabul's Hamid Karzai airport, but all commercial services have been suspended, with only military flights leaving the country as the UK, US and other western countries repatriate their citizens

There were chaotic scenes at Kabul International Airport on Sunday night as thousands of Afghan residents rushed onto the tarmac

There were chaotic scenes at Kabul International Airport on Sunday night as thousands of Afghan residents rushed onto the tarmac

Potential passengers can be seen crowding the tarmac at Kabul airport in Afghanistan with people desperate to leave the country any way they can

Potential passengers can be seen crowding the tarmac at Kabul airport in Afghanistan with people desperate to leave the country any way they can

A U.S. Chinook helicopter flies near the U.S. Embassy as smoke rises in Kabul, Afghanistan, late on Sunday night

A U.S. Chinook helicopter flies near the U.S. Embassy as smoke rises in Kabul, Afghanistan, late on Sunday night


Taliban spokesperson Suhail Shaheen said in a message on Twitter their fighters were under strict orders not to harm anyone. 

'Life, property and honour of none shall be harmed but must be protected by the mujahideen,' he said.

Earlier, Mohammad Naeem, the spokesman for the Taliban's political office, told Al Jazeera TV, the Afghan people and the Taliban had witnessed the fruits of their efforts and sacrifices over 20 years.

'Thanks to God, the war is over,' he said.

It took the Taliban just over a week to seize control of the country after a lightning sweep that ended in Kabul as government forces, trained for years and equipped by the United States and others at a cost of billions of dollars, melted away.

Al Jazeera broadcast footage of what it said were Taliban commanders in the presidential palace with dozens of armed fighters. 

Naeem said the form of the new regime in Afghanistan would be made clear soon, adding the Taliban did not want to live in isolation and calling for peaceful international relations.

The militants sought to project a more moderate face, promising to respect women's rights and protect both foreigners and Afghans.

Many Afghans fear the Taliban will return to past harsh practices in their imposition of sharia religious law. During their rule, women could not work and punishments such as stoning, whipping and hanging were administered.

Both the United Nations and the United States said last week they had received reports that Taliban fighters were executing surrendering government soldiers.  

Taliban officials said they had received no reports of any clashes anywhere in the country: 'The situation is peaceful,' one said, adding the Taliban controlled 90% of state buildings and fighters had been told to prevent any damage.

Central Kabul streets were largely deserted early on a sunny Monday as waking residents pondered their future.

'I'm in a complete state of shock,' said Sherzad Karim Stanekzai, who spent the night in his carpet shop to guard it. 'I know there will be no foreigners, no international people who will now come to Kabul.'

People thronged to the airport from late on Sunday with hundreds wandering on the runways in the dark, pulling luggage and jostling for a place on one of the last commercial flights to leave before U.S. forces took over air traffic control. 

Dozens of men tried to clamber onto an overhead departure gangway to board a plane while hundreds of others milled about, a video posted on social media showed.

U.S. forces gave up their big military base at Bagram, some 60 km north of Kabul, several weeks ago, leaving Kabul's airport their only way out, to the anger of many Afghans.

'The Americans have no right to hold the airport for their own use, they could have used their own base to take people out,' said one person trying to leave.

There was the prospect of chaos in the skies over Afghanistan too. Its civil aviation authority advised transit aircraft to reroute saying its airspace was uncontrolled. 

The Pentagon on Sunday authorized another 1,000 troops to help evacuate U.S. citizens and Afghans who worked for them, expanding its security presence on the ground to almost 6,000 troops within the next 48 hours.

A U.S. State Department spokesperson said early on Monday that all embassy personnel, including Ambassador Ross Wilson, had been transferred to Kabul airport, mostly by helicopter, to await evacuation and the American flag had been lowered and removed from the embassy compound.

Western nations, including France, Germany and New Zealand said they were working to get citizens as well as some Afghan employees out.

In a Facebook post, Ghani said he had left the country to avoid clashes with the Taliban that would endanger millions of Kabul residents. Some social media users branded Ghani, who did not disclose his location, a coward for leaving them in chaos.

In Washington, opponents of President Joe Biden's decision to end America's longest war, launched after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, said the chaos was caused by a failure of leadership.

Biden has faced rising domestic criticism after sticking to a plan, initiated by his Republican predecessor, Donald Trump, to end the U.S. military mission by Aug. 31.

Britain's defence minister said British and NATO forces would not be returning to fight the Taliban.

'That's not on the cards,' Ben Wallace told Sky News. 

Seven dead in Kabul airport chaos: Evacuation flights halted after US soldiers shoot dead two armed Afghans while three are run over by taxiing jets and more plunge to their deaths from fuselage - as UN say Taliban have started 'targeted killings' Seven dead in Kabul airport chaos: Evacuation flights halted after US soldiers shoot dead two armed Afghans while three are run over by taxiing jets and more plunge to their deaths from fuselage - as UN say Taliban have started 'targeted killings' Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 09:25 Rating: 5

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