The United States carried out a missile strike on Islamic State militants in Kabul on Sunday, US officials said.
The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters that the strike targeted suspected ISIS-K militants, a group that is an enemy of both the West and the Taliban and was responsible for a suicide bomb attack outside the airport gates on Thursday.
The strike is the second carried out by US forces in Afghanistan since a Daesh suicide bomber struck the airport on Thursday, killing 13 US troops and scores of Afghan civilians trying to flee the country.
Al Jazeera initially quoted Afghan police chief Rashid as saying that a rocket hit a neighbourhood northwest of the airport amid US evacuation and has killed a child.
According to Afghan media reports, the blast occurred following a drone strike in the Khawja Bughra area, and killed seven, including four children, a husband and wife, and one other person. It is not clear if they all belong to the same family. One person injured in the attack was rushed to a medical facility.
“A car parked inside a house in which children and adults were sitting was hit, resulting in the casualties,” area residents said.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said that a US airstrike “targeted a suicide bomber in a vehicle who wanted to strike Kabul airport”, according to Al Jazeera.
CNN soon after reported a defence official confirming that the US carried out a defensive airstrike inside Kabul.
The official said the drone strike “targeted a suspected [Daesh] car bomb that was targeting the airport”, adding that a secondary explosion indicates there was a substantial amount of explosive material.
CNN quoted the official as saying that initial information indicates “there were no civilian casualties”.
Footage on TV and social media showed black smoke rising in the area in the aftermath of the blast.