US marks 20th anniversary of 9/11 attacks

People in the US are marking the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Thousands are expected to attend memorial ceremonies at the scene of the attacks in New York, Washington, and Pennsylvania. President Joe Biden plans to visit all three locations.

The attacks took place on the morning of September 11, 2001. Members of the Islamic militant group Al-Qaeda hijacked 4 passenger planes. They flew 2 of them into the towers of the World Trade Center in New York and another into the Pentagon. The fourth plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania after passengers fought back against the hijackers.

Nearly 3,000 people died, including office workers, police officers, and hundreds of New York City firefighters who rushed into the burning towers. Thousands of others were seriously wounded.

The attacks led then-President George W. Bush to start the war in Afghanistan. The Taliban militant group controlled the country and was providing a safe haven to Al-Qaeda.

Just last month, President Biden ordered all US troops to withdraw. Since then, the Taliban have rushed in and retaken control of the country.