Sunday Territorian Sun 22 Aug 2021
Sunday Territorian; NewspaperNT
Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.
News Corp Australia
Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.
News Corp Australia
14 NEWS SUNDAY AUGUST 22 2021 NTNE01Z01MA - V1 fall of afghanistan The Australian Embassy Close Protection Team (CPT) Operations running sheet, their official report, describes the night of the attack. JANUARY 14, 2008 SERENA HOTEL ATTACK 17.00HRS-23.50HRS. (Australian Embassy Office/ Accom 10 rooms, second floor, East Wing). Observation: Weather extreme cold, expected down to minus 30 (C). 17.00HRS Angela Tierney and Stuart Shaw out all afternoon on appointments. Shaw notes traffic bad, Shiite holiday Moharram but something doesnt seem normal. Official dinner HEROES WHO SAVED appointment for pair with AusAID and ADF reps cancelled as things didnt feel safe. All staff in embassy. 17.40HRS CPT advise Shaw Dutch Embassy requested urgent meeting as it had security intelligence it did not want to pass on over phone lines. Two CPT dispatched to collect, five remain to protect embassy floor. Shaw notes I remember feeling that the request was unusual and that (TS) appeared unusually concerned. 18.05HRS Intel received from Dutch. 18.15HRS First of three explosions, grenades thrown at gates and guards box killing two, a distraction to allow two suicide bombers entry. One detonates vest in carpark entry after being shot by another hotel guard. DFAT Mercedes damaged not drivable Shaw secured in his room, (TS and FS) called back from Dutch trip jumpy Afghan security outside hotel go to shoot them, yell al-Qaeda, alQaeda stop them, evade and enter, reinforce embassy wing. Other CTP knew Angela Tierney in hotel gym. 18.15HRS Defensive positions taken up to protect East Wing (DG) cover corridor with line of sight to lobby, (redacted) cover stairwell, (redacted) and (redacted) make way to gym. Terrorist heading for West Wing and gym, fires at staff member but misses, kills an elderly foreign resident. EXCLUSIVE: How Aussie vets came to the rescue during a bloody Taliban attack on a Kabul hotel. CHARLES MIRANDA reports AUSTRALIAS acting ambassador to Afghanistan came chillingly close to being murdered by Taliban insurgents at a Kabul hotel, saved only by a security detail of former Australian soldiers as she cowered in a gym change room. And the terrorist who specifically planned the hit in January 2008 can now be revealed as the deputy of the Taliban government now ruling Afghanistan. It raises questions as to how the Australian government can deal with a future Afghan administration. Just how close Australias then Charge dAffaires and acting ambassador Angela Tierney came to being killed in the assault on the five-star Serena Hotel, where the Australian embassy was temporarily located, has never been revealed, with reports from the day acknowledging an incident but confirming all embassy staff were safe. But secret, in-confidence and strictly confidential classified documents released under Freedom of Information reveal gripping detailed accounts of the Taliban plot to execute foreigners. It also details Ms Tierneys bloody escape and being only a metre from one of the terrorists. Seven people including five foreign nationals were killed and six others injured in the attack. Just after 6pm there was an explosion, as grenades were thrown at the hotel gate by a suicide bomber and a gunman raced into the lobby firing AK-47s. Embassy First Secretary Stuart Shaw rang the Australian Defence Force HQ two kilometres away to alert them but they had already heard the explosions. Traffic meant they could not get there in time. But three members of Australian Embassy Close Personal Protection (CCP) team raced into his room, closed his curtains, ordering him to don an armoured vest and helmet and shelter in his bathroom. Where is Angela? one of them asked. Ms Tierney was in the gym when she heard the commotion. The gym would soon become the focus of the attack and where some would be killed. Angela had responded to the first explosions by taking refuge in the womens changing room along with seven other women and one man, Mr Shaw recalled in his statement. Her strategy was to stay somewhere safe enough for long enough to give the security team a chance to reach her she never doubted that someone was coming for her. terror group Haqqani Network and co-ordinated the hotel assault from a base in Pakistan. He remains in a dual position in the leadership of the Taliban and Haqqani terror group. The man who claimed responsibility on behalf of the Taliban at that time was Zadihullah Mujahid, who today fronts the worlds media as the Afghan-Taliban government spokesman. The details of the Serena attack and Ms Tierneys harrowing escape are contained in memos she and others made recommending bravery Mayhem and screams: Minute by minute report of the hotel slaughter Tracking the Taliban killers rampage SWIMMNG POOL GYM SERVICE ENTRANCE EMBASSY TOP FLOOR HOTEL RECEPTION GUARD HOUSE CAR PARK Angela Tierney shelters here. The scene was described as mayhem as the security team rescued the diplomats from Australia as well as the UAE and other countries. Ms Tierney was treated for deep lacerations to lower left leg suffered during her escape, which included climbing a wall and running through four rows of rose bushes. Intelligence reports reveal the hit was specifically planned and authorised by Sirajuddin Haqqani, the ruthless current deputy of the Taliban. At the time of the attack he was founder and head of the Path the insurgents took. The protection teams map of the insurgents movement through the Serena Hotel. One of the Australian Embassy Close Personal Protection team involved in the rescue, and (right) a CCTV image of a Taliban attacker disguised as an Afghan soldier during the insurgent rampage through the Serena Hotel in Kabul. I I e I e e