On September 27, ISIS fighters attacked Kabul Airport in the Afghan capital Kabul right after US Secretary of Defense James Norman Mattis arrived to Afghanistan according to the ISIS-linked news agency Amaq. The ISIS-linked news agency claimed that dozens of ISIS suicide bombers participated in the attack.
According to Amaq, ISIS fighters attacked the Turkish forces training center, the UN office and the US Army training field in the military section of Kabul Airport. Amaq also said that ISIS fighters targeted a US plane on the runway of the airport with SPG-9 recoilless gun, RPG-7 rocket-propelled grenades and mortars.
Afghan Interior Ministry spokesperson Najib Danish revealed that Mattis and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg had left the airport hours before the attack took place. US Army official announced that 40 rounds of munitions hit the airport, including 29 rocket-propelled grenades.
According to reports, 5 civilians were injured in the ISIS attack on Kabul Airport. Moreover, Kabul Airport chief Yaqub Rassouli said airplane hangars and some helicopters were also damaged in the attack.
Mattis commented on the attack at a press conference with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani by saying that “An attack on an airport anywhere in the world is a criminal act by a terrorist.”
“This is a classic definition of what the Taliban are up to right now. It defines their approach to how they see their role here and if in fact this is what they have done, they will find the Afghan security forces continuing on the offensive against them in every district of the country right now. So it is what it is, but it’s also the reason why we band together, and we don’t question what we’re doing here,” Mattis added holding the Taliban the responsibility for the attack.
The Taliban spokesman claimed earlier that Taliban was behind that attack, and said that Mattis was the main target of it. However, it is more likely that ISIS was indeed the attacker as it provided detailed info about the attack that is identical to Danish and US Army statements.