General Frank McKenzie, the head of US Central Command, said the attacks that have killed at least 80 people including 12 American soldiers were believed to have been carried out by fighters associated with Daesh’s Afghanistan affiliate.

A screen grab shows people carrying an injured person to a hospital after an attack at Kabul airport, in Kabul, Afghanistan August 26, 2021.
A screen grab shows people carrying an injured person to a hospital after an attack at Kabul airport, in Kabul, Afghanistan August 26, 2021. (Reuters)

The US general overseeing the evacuation from Afghanistan says the United States will “go after” the perpetrators of the Kabul airport attacks if they can be found.

General Frank McKenzie said the attacks on Thursday were believed to have been carried out by fighters associated with Daesh’s Afghanistan affiliate.

He said the attacks, which killed 12 US service members, would not stop the United States from continuing its evacuation of Americans and others. McKenzie warned there are still “extremely active” security threats at the airport in the Afghan capital.

“We expect these attacks to continue,” he said, adding that Taliban commanders have been asked to take additional security measures to prevent another suicide bombing on the airport’s perimeter. He said he sees no indication that the Taliban allowed Thursday’s attacks to happen.

READ MORE: Attack at Kabul airport leaves more than 80 dead

'US determined to retaliate'

McKenzie vowed retaliation for the deadly attack at Kabul airport he blamed on "two suicide bombers assessed to have been ISIS [Daesh] fighters."

"We are working very hard right now to determine attribution, to determine who is associated with this cowardly attack, and we're prepared to take action against them," said General Kenneth McKenzie.

He added that US forces were "prepared and ready to defend against" possible further IS, also known as Daesh, attacks.

READ MORE: US, allies ask people to leave Kabul airport area over Daesh threat

Evacuation will continue

Also on Thursday, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin suggested the evacuation will go on and expressed his “deepest condolences to the loved ones and teammates of all those killed and wounded in Kabul today."

“Terrorists took their lives at the very moment these troops were trying to save the lives of others," he said.

“We mourn their loss. We will treat their wounds. And we will support their families in what will most assuredly be devastating grief. But we will not be dissuaded from the task at hand.”

“To do anything less — especially now — would dishonor the purpose and sacrifice these men and women have rendered our country and the people of Afghanistan,” the statement also said.

READ MORE: Turkey flies back first batch of troops from volatile Afghanistan

UN chief calls UNSC meeting 

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday called a meeting of the permanent members of the Security Council to discuss the chaotic situation in Afghanistan, diplomats said.

Guterres sent letters formally inviting the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China to meet on Monday, the diplomats told AFP.

A spokesperson for Guterres confirmed the meeting.

READ MORE: Blinken says Taliban commits to allowing departures after August 31

Source: TRTWorld and agencies