Unfolding events push thousands of Afghans and foreign nationals creating a surge on to the tarmac at Kabul airport seeking a place on a flight out of the country, amid chaotic scenes that followed as the Taliban took Over the city.
With the Taliban installed in the presidential palace and the elected president having fled the country, access to Hamid Karzai airport, five kilometers from the center of the capital, was possible only through Taliban checkpoints.
The US, UK, Germany, Canada and a host of other coalition nations are all seeking to evacuate their nationals from the country. The southern – civilian – side of the airport came under fire on Sunday, and on Monday morning, there were reports US troops had fired into the air to disperse surging crowds.
Following the desperate attempts, unconfirmed reports say that three people had died after clinging onto the undercarriage of a departing US air force C17 plane. As the aircraft took off they fell to their deaths on rooftops near the airport.
Foreign embassies warned their nationals and Afghan citizens it was not safe to travel to the airport, and only to go there if instructed. Embassy staff are being helicoptered to the military side of the airport, which has been secured by US soldiers.
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