Taliban denies kidnapping reports near Kabul airport


Kabul, Aug 21 : A Taliban official has denied reports that foreign nationals were kidnapped near the Kabul airport, where big crowds still exist amid US-led evacuation efforts, local media reported on Saturday. "The report about kidnapping is a rumor. The Taliban members are helping all foreign nationals to get access to the airport. We are determined to provide safe passage to all foreigners to get to the airport," Ahmadullah Waseq, a Taliban spokesperson, told local media Eitlalatroz. He said Taliban forces were escorting about 150 Indian citizens to safely enter the airport, reports Xinhua news agency. Following the Taliban's takeover of the Afghan capital on August 15, thousands of Afghans have flooded to Kabul airport to leave the country. The evacuation flights were continuing as three flights took off on Saturday morning, resident Farhad Mohammadi said. About 5,000 US troops have been deployed in Kabul airport to help with the airlift process. At least 12 people have been killed in gun shootings and stampedes in the airport since the capital city's fall. The situation in Afghanistan remains uncertain after the Taliban's swift takeover of most parts of the country. /IANS


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