President Joe Biden vowed Thursday to retaliate for a terrorist attack that killed 13 US service members outside Kabul's international airport even as he said the frantic mission to airlift Americans from Afghanistan would continue.
"We will not forgive. We will not forget. We will hunt you down and make you pay," Biden said in early evening remarks from the White House, hours after the Pentagon said 12 service members had been killed in two separate suicide blasts outside the airport gates. Shortly after Biden spoke, US Central Command announced an additional US service member has died, with a total of 18 wounded. Ten Marines were among the 13 service members killed.
In a subdued but firm tone, Biden said he's asked the US military for options to respond to the explosions, which he said had been carried out by the Islamic State affiliate operating in Afghanistan.
"We will respond with force and precision at our time, at the place we choose and the moment of our choosing," Biden said. "Here's what you need to know: These ISIS terrorists will not win."
Two powerful bomb blasts have struck the perimeter of Kabul's Hamid Karzai International Airport last night, as civilians continued to seek to escape on flights from Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.
At least 90 people have been killed and 150 others wounded.