MANILA, Aug 27 (Mabuhay) –There were no Filipino casualties at the bombings that occurred outside the Kabul airport in Afghanistan on Thursday, according to a statement posted by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).
The DFA said the information is based on preliminary information from the Philippine Ambassador to Pakistan Daniel Espiritu.
The DFA has raised Alert Level 4, which requires mandatory repatriation, over Afghanistan after Taliban forces seized power in the country. Since then, repatriations have been ongoing.
In total, 185 Filipinos already left Afghanistan while 24 of their compatriots are still stuck in the war-torn country. Of the 24, 16 have requested repatriation from either their companies or the government.
According to a Reuters report, suicide bombers struck the crowded gates of Kabul airport with at least two explosions on Thursday.
Two US officials put the US death toll at 13 service members but there was no complete toll of Afghan civilians but video images uploaded by Afghan journalists showed dozens of bodies of people killed in packed crowds outside the airport.
In Washington, an emotional President Joe Biden vowed that the United States would hunt down the perpetrators of twin explosions.
“We will not forgive, we will not forget. We will hunt you down and make you pay,” he said in remarks at the White House.
Biden said US evacuations would continue. He gave no indication of a change in next Tuesday’s US pullout target.
“I have also ordered my commanders to develop operational plans to strike ISIS-K assets, leadership and facilities. We will respond with force and precision at our time, at the place we choose and the moment of our choosing,” Biden said. (MNS)