Who is Clarissa Ward? CNN reporter warned of Kabul's suicide bomb attack weeks ago

Clarissa Ward in Afghanistan (Image via CNN)
Clarissa Ward in Afghanistan (Image via CNN)
Abhirup Sengupta

Two weeks before the suicide bomb attack near Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, CNN reporter Clarissa Ward was forewarned by an ISIS-K commander.

The interviewee said that the terrorist organization was:

"Laying low and waiting for a time to strike."

The interview was conducted before the Taliban took control of Kabul and was finally aired by CNN on Friday (August 28). The suicide bombing attack on August 26 (Thursday) claimed the lives of 160 Afghans and 13 U.S. troops while injuring 18 other military personnel.

The Islamic State (aka ISIS) claimed responsibility for the attack. The organization also alleged that the bomber managed to get "within five meters" of U.S. troops before detonating the bomb near a Taliban checkpoint.

Who is CNN's brave reporter Clarissa Ward?

Clarissa Ward is a British-American journalist who is also the chief international correspondent for CNN. Ward is currently reporting in Afghanistan after the Taliban took control of the country in mid-August. She has around 15 years of experience as a war and crisis correspondent.

Ward was born on January 31, 1980, in London, England, and grew up there and in New York City. She graduated from Yale University with distinction and has an honorary doctor of letters degree from Middlebury College.

From 2003 to 2007, Clarissa Ward was associated with FOX News, where she covered the trial of Saddam Hussein. Furthermore, she has been a correspondent for FOX News Channel, based out of Beirut and Baghdad.


Clarissa joined ABC News in 2007 and worked with them for three years, where she was a correspondent for Beijing and Moscow. Meanwhile, in 2010, Ward joined CBS News, where she worked on special reports. The episodes focused on issues like the ISIS insurgency in Syria and the revolution in Ukraine.

The 41-year old won two Emmys for her coverage of Syria. Clarissa Ward started her stint with CNN in September 2015. While working with CNN, she spoke at a United Nations Security Council meeting regarding her experience in Aleppo, Syria.

After getting promoted as the chief international correspondent of Afghanistan in 2019, Clarissa reported on the country's Taliban-controlled parts. In 2021, Ward also reported on the Myanmar protests and coups. Following this, she returned to Afghanistan to report on the Taliban's control, Afghans trying to flee the country and Afghan women's safety under the Taliban.

Personal Life

Clarissa Ward married Philipp von Bernstorff in November 2016, after meeting him in 2007. She shares two children with him.

Recognition of Clarissa Ward's work

In May 2012, Ward was the recipient of the George Foster Peabody Award for her reportage of the Syrian Civil War. Later, she received another "Peabody Award". The established reporter has also received seven Emmy Awards, along with two Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia Silver Baton.


Clarissa Ward reportedly speaks six languages, including fluent Italian and French, followed by Russian, Arabic, Spanish, and Mandarin. More information about Clarissa can be found in her 2020 auto-biographical book, "On All Fronts: The Education of a Journalist".

Edited by R. Elahi


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