At least 5 people have been killed in Kabul airport, where people are trying to force their way onto planes out of Afghanistan, report says

People running toward Kabul Airport Terminal, Afghanistan
People running at Kabul Airport Terminal on August 16, 2021. Jawad Sukhanyar via Reuters
  • At least five people were killed at Kabul airport as people tried to flee, Reuters reported.
  • Videos showed the chaotic scene as people tried to leave as the Taliban took over the capital.
  • US troops fired into the air earlier in the day. It’s not clear if gunshots caused the deaths.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

At least five people have been killed at Kabul airport as hundreds of people were trying to force their way onto planes out of Afghanistan, Reuters reported Monday, citing witnesses.

The rush out of Afghanistan came after the Taliban stormed the capital city on Sunday, causing gridlock and chaos at the airport. All commercial flights out of the airport have been suspended.

A US official told Reuters earlier on Monday that American troops, who had taken control of the airport, fired into the air to scatter the crowd.

It was not clear whether the deaths were caused by gunshots or a stampede, Reuters reported.

“The crowd was out of control,” the official told Reuters by phone. “The firing was only done to defuse the chaos.”

The Department of Defense did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

These videos below shows a crowd of people running as gunshots are heard:

US troops secured the airport on Monday, allowing the US and other countries to evacuate its own personnel.

But the suspension of commerical flights leaves Afghans and other people stranded under Taliban rule.

Many of those include Afghans that aided the US military and activists for issues like women’s rights, who now fear punishment from the Taliban.

Rakhshanda Jilali, a human-rights activist trying to leave the country, told Reuters: “How can [the Americans] hold the airport and dictate terms and conditions to Afghans?”

“This is our airport but we are seeing diplomats being evacuated while we wait in complete uncertainty.”