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Taliban take over 3 gates at Kabul’s airport

Kabul, Afghanistan | Xinhua |  The U.S. and coalition forces have handed over control of three gates, including the entrance to the military section, of Kabul’s airport, to Taliban members, a Taliban official told local media Sunday.

“The U.S. troops are in control of a small part of the airport, including an area where the radar system of the airport is located,” Enhamullah Samangani told Tolo News TV.

Taliban deployed a unit of special forces at the main gate of the airport about two weeks ago.

“We are ready to take over the security and technical responsibility of the airport,” he said.

The takeover came after a deadly suicide bomb blast and gun firing claimed by ISIS-K, a local affiliate of the Islamic State, killed 170 Afghans and 13 U.S. troops at an eastern gate of the facility on Thursday.

Earlier a Taliban official reportedly said that the Taliban’s special forces, and a team of technical professionals and qualified engineers were ready to take over all charges of the airport after the departure of the U.S. forces.

Dozens of planes, including military planes, took off from the airport since late Saturday. Most of some 6,000 U.S. and coalition forces and a unit of Afghan Special Forces who were deployed to the airport before the Taliban’s takeover of Kabul on Aug. 15 had reportedly evacuated.

All U.S. and coalition forces are expected to leave the country on Aug. 31, a planned deadline.

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XINHUA

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