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Kabul airport: suicide attack

May 17, 2015

Summary: Vehicle-borne suicide bomb strikes international forces by Kabul airport as a part of the standard Taliban Spring offensive…

Afghan and foreign security forces inspect the site of a suicide attack in Kabul on Sunday.

Reports coming in of an explosion by Kabul International Airport, probably a vehicle borne suicide attack.  Many civilian casualties reported and several killed, including two Afghan girls.  The EUPOL mission has said they believe that their vehicles were targeted.

A Eupol spokeswoman, Sari Haukka-Konu, said one non-mission member who was travelling in a Eupol vehicle had been killed. She had no details on the nationality or identity of the deceased.

Police spokesman Ebadullah Karimi said a suicide bomber in a Toyota Corolla rammed a convoy of foreign troops on the road from Kabul`s main airport to a NATO military installation nearby.

One report suggests that the attacker was “inside” a checkpoint

Deputy interior ministry spokesperson, Najib Danish said the bombing occurred inside the major checkpoint leading into the capital’s main airport.

Difficult to entirely guard against and a favoured area to attack over the years, this seems to be one more of the standard package of attacks from the Taliban during their Spring operations, although their website is currently down and they do not yet seem to have claimed it yet.  The Taliban generally seem to prefer to wait until they can see that a viable target was struck, with a minimum of civilian casualties before announcing their responsibility.  The attack might have been a “target of opportunity” in which the driver was sent to cruise down the main airport approach roads in the hope of spotting a column of foreign military vehicles.  There is likely still a large component of ISAF/Resolute Support installations in and around the airport with military vehicles going to and from the airport probably several times a day.  The roads are always busy around here, with little driving discipline – it is very easy to get slowed down or brought to a halt in the traffic and present a target.   I never enjoyed doing that route – I remember on one trip from city to airport a British soldier screaming himself hoarse from the turret of the vehicle we were travelling in as he tried to get the Afghan traffic to back off, keep a distance and allow our vehicle to at least keep moving – with minimal success.

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