An Italian military aircraft
evacuating Afghan civilians from Kabul airport has been fired at as a journalist
has claimed that one or two rogue battalions of Afghanistan’s – now dispersed –NDS
were still active near the Kabul airport.
The firing and the presence of the rogue NDS units were reported on Thursday when twin bomb attacks at Kabul airport killed and wounded a large number of people.
Italy’s C-130 transporter received machine-gun fire as it left Kabul airport carrying around 100 Afghan civilians on Thursday, an Italian journalist who was aboard the plane told Sky TG 24.
She said the pilot promptly manouvered the plant and escaped the fire but “there was a bit of panic.”
Afghanistan’s local news agency Asvaka claimed gunmen at a hill north of Kabul had fired at the C-130 as it was taking off from Kabul international airport. Later, the aircraft safely landed in Kuwait.
Reuters news agency later quoted Italian officials as saying that Afghan forces had fired into the air to disperse crowds near Kabul airport and not at a military plane.It was no clear what Afghan forces they were referring to. There are reports that some of the soldiers from the Afghan National Army were helping the U.S. Marines at Kabul airport to manage crowds of Afghan nationals trying to leave the country. However, the Asvaka report claims the shot had come from a hill near the airport.
Journalists Sumaira Khan, who is in Afghanistan, has told
Samaa TV the one or two battalions of NDS were still at the Kabul airport. “They
refused to surrender before the Taliban and their fate will be decided after
August 31,” she said speaking at the “7 se 8” show.
Sumaira said a few days ago an NDS man had attempted to fire upon the Taliban’s elite Albdari unit, he was shot dead by foreign troops deployed at the airport.
It is not clear if the rogue NDS unit was responsible
for shots being fired at the Italian C-130.