On Tuesday, a State Department official confirmed that there was a weekend siege at an Intercontinental Hotel in the Afghan capital and that there were more deaths than initially reported. As a result of the terror attack, “multiple” American citizens were killed.
According to Fox News, there has not been a confirmation on the exact number of American citizens that were killed or injured in this attack. However, at least 22 people total were killed, with initial reports counting only 18.
Kabul’s famous Intercontinental Hotel was attacked by Taliban militants who were wearing suicide vests. According to the Afghan interior ministry official, 14 of those killed with foreigners and the others were Afghans.
Reportedly, several of the people who were killed were employees of a private Afghan airline, Kam Air. When the Taliban militants attacked the hotel, over 150 people fled the building, including over 40 foreigners. According to the Interior Ministry spokesman Najib Danish, several areas of the structure caught on fire during the siege.
Fox reported that some people ran out of the building while they still had a chance, while others were seen tying bed sheets together and climbing out of upper-floor windows. Others that were stuck in the building were rescued by Afghan forces.
A Greek Kam Air pilot, Vassilis Vassileiou, said that he had cut a mattress open and hid inside of it during the attack.
He said, “They were first killing Westerners and then laughing at the dead. I was constantly hearing shouts, shots and bangs on the doors.”
Another foreigner who was visiting the hotel said that he was able to jump into a tree from a hotel window. He said that when he began to run, he could not tell the difference between the police officers and the Taliban because they were all wearing similar uniforms.
According to CBS, after the siege ended on Sunday the security forces also had to defuse a vehicle that was full of explosives near the hotel.
According to the State Department, the United States is sending their “deepest condolences” to those who were affected by this tragic attack. They are set to give further information at a briefing on Tuesday afternoon.
As more information is released about the American citizens who were among the victims of this horrible attack, we will update here. Please be praying for the family and friends of everyone affected by this. In other breaking news, early reports are confirming that 1 is dead and several others shot in a school shooting.