Cyprus strongly condemned the terrorist attacks on Kabul Airport that killed scores of people and 13 US service personnel involved in the evacuation from Afghanistan.
The Cypriot Foreign Ministry issued a statement saying: “We condemn in the strongest possible terms the heinous terrorist attacks at Kabul Airport, which caused numerous casualties among innocent civilians and those trying to help them.”
“At this extremely difficult time, our thoughts are with all affected. Condolences to families of victims.”
On Thursday, Islamic State carried out two suicide bombings near Kabul airport, killing US soldiers and Afghan civilians.
At least 13 US service members were killed and 18 more injured, the Pentagon said, officials, warning that the toll could grow.
At least 72 Afghans were killed, up from Thursday’s estimate of 60. Officials said that another 140 were wounded.
The attacks followed several warnings that there was a risk of an imminent terror attack.
The IS affiliate in Afghanistan claimed responsibility for the attacks and said it targeted US troops and Afghan allies.
“We will not forgive. We will not forget. We will hunt you down and make you pay,” warned US President Joe Biden.
“I will defend our interests and our people with every measure at my command.”
The explosions came as thousands of Westerners and Afghans scramble to get on flights out of the country before the deadline of August 31, seen as a red line by the Taliban.
Several countries, including Germany, have ended their evacuation efforts due to the security situation on the ground.
The US Pentagon has said they will continue to evacuate US citizens, Afghans who worked with the international forces, and vulnerable Afghans.
“We continue to execute our number one mission which is to get as many American citizens and other evacuees as possible out of Afghanistan,” said General Frank McKenzie, overseeing the operation at the Kabul airport.
“The plan is designed to operate while under stress and while under attack,” he added.
Kabul airport is currently being defended and run by the US, which has 5,800 troops on the ground – with the help of more than 1,000 UK troops. (agencies)