Kabul airport bomber who killed U.S. troops was released from Bagram prison before deadly attack

Intelligence sources confirmed that the suicide bomber had been set free by the Taliban.
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Kabul, Afghanistan
Taliban fighter stands guard near twin suicide bombs in Kabul, Afghanistan. Aug. 26, 2021.
(WAKIL KOHSAR/AFP via Getty Images)

The suicide bomber who killed 13 U.S. servicemembers and scores of Afghans outside Kabul airport was set free from prison at Bagram Air Base shortly before the deadly August bombing, intelligence officials confirmed.

The bomber, identified by ISIS-K as Abdul Rehman Al-Loghri, walked out of the prison on Aug. 15, after the U.S. military relinquished control of the sprawling Bagram base, according to multiple sources. The bombing occurred the following week, on Aug. 26, as crowds of people surrounded the airport.

The jihadist was among those who were set free from Bagram prison when Taliban forces took over Afghanistan, two U.S. intelligence sources told Just the News.

Other news outlets also have reported that Al-Loghri was released from the prison.

The White House on Wednesday deflected questions about the bomber.

"I can't speak to the specific case," spokesperson Jen Psaki told reporters. "I'd let it — leave it to the intelligence community to speak to that. So I'd point you to them."

Psaki reiterated to reporters the administration's position on why the United States relinquished the vast air base where the prison was housed.

"I'd remind you that, as it relates to Bagram, there was a decision made to close Bagram because it wasn't strategically in the interest of the United States and our national security to keep it open with 5,000 troops there protecting Bagram at a distance that was far away from the capital and far away from where people from the embassy would be evacuated," she said. "So, that was the broad-based decision."

Prior to being freed by the Taliban, Al-Loghri had been held for four years at the high-security facility, according to an India-based news outlet.