Taliban fighters beating Afghans attempting to reach airport, video shows
Scenes from the ground in Afghanistan as the Taliban take hold of the country.
Shocking video shows Taliban fighters beating Afghans on their way to the Kabul airport, as a former U.S. contractor tells Fox News that fighters are going through neighborhoods looking for those who worked for the U.S. government.
The Afghan, who is a former State Department contractor, told Fox News that Taliban fighters have established checkpoints throughout the city and around the airport -- and are beating those on their way to the airport.
Video provided to Fox News shows a Taliban fighter kicking a man in the face and another whipping people walking by.
When the former contractor encountered a checkpoint, the Taliban guard let him go but warned him not to leave the country: "You can go, don’t run away," he said.
"There was kids women, babies, old women, they could barely walk. They were very very bad situation, I'm telling you," he told Fox News. "At the end, I was thinking that there was like 10,000 or more than 10,000 people and they’re running into the airport."
"The Taliban [were] beating people and the people were jumping from the fence, the concertina wire, and also the wall," he said.
He told Fox that the Taliban are going through neighborhoods looking for those who worked with the US government and that they were asking his neighbors about him.
The shocking scenes come as the Taliban strengthens its hold of Kabul and Afghans try and flee the country. Flights were temporarily suspended from Kabul International Airport on Monday as U.S. forces attempted to gain control of the crowd of Afghans desperate to leave the country. U.S. officials told Fox News Monday that the runway was "not secure" as hundreds of Afghans "breached" the airport walls and flooded the runway.
A White House official told Fox News Tuesday that military and civilian flights from Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul are resuming.
The official said that over the last 24 hours, the U.S. has been able to move more than 700 people out of Afghanistan, including 150 American citizens.
Officials said as of a few hours ago, they estimated that there are 11,000 foreign diplomats and other third-country nationals awaiting evacuation. Another 4,000-6,000 Afghans are on the commercial side of the airport refusing to leave until they are processed to depart Afghanistan.
President Biden has authorized 6,000 U.S. troops to deploy to Afghanistan to assist in the evacuation of U.S. personnel and Afghan allies as the Taliban pushes to restore the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan – the formal name of the country under the Taliban rule before the militants were ousted by U.S.-led forces in the wake of the 9/11 attacks.
Fox News’ Brooke Singman contributed to this report.