Taliban's 'head of security' at Kabul airport linked to ISIS-K raising fears he helped bomber

IT IS feared that the Taliban's self-proclaimed head of security at Kabul airport has helped the bomber to cause the devastating explosion which killed at least 169 people.

Al-Qaeda terrorist Khalil Haqqani, who has links to ISIS-K, is one of America's most wanted with a $5million bounty on his head.


The Haqqani network has been blamed for some of the deadliest terror attacks across the world in recent years.

They have been designated a foreign terrorist group by the United States – and the jihadists are also under United Nations sanctions.

But despite being a part of the Taliban, experts believe the group is autonomous thanks to their reputation.

They are expected to be powerful players in the new regime following the Taliban's takeover of Afghanistan casting doubts on the group's pledge not to harbour terrorists.

Last week Haqqani was spotted leading prayers for Taliban fighters at a mosque despite the $5million bounty on his head.

According to the New York Times, Haqqani told the crowd: "Our first priority for Afghanistan is security. If there is no security, there is no life.

"We will give security, then we will give economy, trade, education for men and women. There will be no discrimination."

The fearsome group was formed by his brother, Jalaluddin Haqqani, who gained prominence in the 1980s as a hero of the anti-Soviet jihad.

🔵 Read our Afghanistan live blog for the latest updates

At the time, he was a valuable CIA asset as the United States and its allies, such as Pakistan, funnelled arms and money to the mujahideen.

Following the Soviet withdrawal, Jalaluddin Haqqani forged close ties with foreign jihadists – including Osama bin Laden.

He served as a minister for the Islamist regime when the Taliban took over Afghanistan in 1996, until 2001.

The Haqqanis have a reputation for frequently using suicide bombers – including drivers in cars and trucks packed with huge amounts of explosives – and have carried out deadly assaults on major targets.

They are the group's "most combat-ready forces", UN monitors said in a June report.

A British intelligence officer told VOA: "The fact we have Khalil al-Rahman Haqqani in charge of Kabul security is dismaying. 

"The Haqqani and Al Qaeda have a long history together, you could argue they are intertwined, and it is highly unlikely they will cut ties."

TRAGEDY

Questions about Khalil's involvement in the airport bombing arose after it was revealed that two Brits and the child of a UK national were killed in the attack at the airport in the Afghan capital just hours before the evacuation deadline.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said: "I was deeply saddened to learn that two British nationals and the child of another British national were killed by yesterday’s terror attack, with two more injured.

“These were innocent people and it is a tragedy that as they sought to bring their loved ones to safety in the UK they were murdered by cowardly terrorists.

“Yesterday’s despicable attack underlines the dangers facing those in Afghanistan and reinforces why we are doing all we can to get people out. We are offering consular support to their families.

“We will not turn our backs on those who look to us in their hour of need, and we will never be cowed by terrorists."

On Friday, the Pentagon said the attack involved only one location and not two as previously reported.

ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack, sharing a picture online of one of the suicide bombers.

Thirteen US troops and dozens of Afghans were among those killed in the blast while another 200 people were wounded.

Meanwhile, the UK's final evacuation flight for Afghan nationals has left the airport in Kabul – leaving more than 1,000 trapped with the Taliban.

Experts warn another devastating terror attack is "likely".



    Source: Read Full Article