No Australian troops died in Afghan attack

No Australians troops or officials have been killed in two deadly bomb blasts in Kabul that killed more than 70 people including 12 American soldiers.

Defence Minister Peter Dutton confirmed Australian forces departed Kabul after the decision to complete a final airlift on Thursday.

“It’s a horrible, horrible day,” he told the Nine Network on Friday.


“I just grieve, like every decent person would, at the loss of life and in particular for us, the loss of the American lives.”

Suicide bombers – linked to the Afghan affiliate of Islamic State known as Islamic State Khorasan (ISIS-K) -have taken responsibility for the twin attacks.

At least 60 Afghan civilians have been killed and 143 injured in the blasts that killed 11 US Marines and one Navy medic.

It is unclear whether any Australian citizens or Afghan visa holders have been caught up in the bloodbath.

US President Joe Biden has vowed to hunt down the people behind the attacks.

Mr Dutton signalled Australia would offer assistance to any mission.

“Australia has worked alongside the United States in every major battle in modern history and we will continue to work with the American allies,” he told Sky News.

“We’ve stood by them through thick and thin and we will continue to do that into the future.”

He said Australia had no better friend than the US.

“We will do whatever we can with the United States to keep our respective people and interest safe and secure,” the minister said.

“We will not deviate from that path.”

Mr Dutton said the US military provided security for thousands of Australian citizens and visa holders at two locations where the blasts were detonated.

“Our troops will be devastated by the loss of their comrades,” he said.

Australia helped about 4000 people escape Afghanistan, which descended into chaos after the Taliban rapidly seized control following a US decision to withdraw from the country after 20 years.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade had warned earlier on Thursday that people should not to travel to Kabul airport because of the risk of a terrorist attack.

“These people are more extreme than the Taliban and are basically at war with the Taliban – it is a horribly complex situation,” Mr Dutton said.

“I’m very pleased and relieved our soldiers have departed from Kabul and we took the decision to lift the last of our people yesterday and they are safely in the United Arab Emirates.”

While the rescue mission exceeded the government’s expectations, some Australian citizens and hundreds of Afghans with visas remain in the war-torn nation.

Mr Dutton said some people were being advised to go to other borders.

“We hope commercial flights are available again soon, but, as we’ve seen overnight, and as the intelligence continues to indicate, more terrorist attacks are likely,” he warned.

Deputy Labor leader Richard Marles said the bombings were a reminder of how dangerous the evacuation operation was.

“This is completely tragic,” he told Nine.

“It just seems to put an exclamation mark on what has been a devastating few days.”

© AAP 2021