U.S. President Joe Biden said Wednesday that the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan may exceed the original deadline of August 31 in order to evacuate U.S. citizens. The U.S. Department of Defense also said the same day, the U.S. military is currently unable to contact people outside Kabul airport.
“If there are any U.S. citizens who need to leave, we will stay until we withdraw them all,” Biden told ABC News, Reuters reported Thursday. Reported that the day many U.S. lawmakers urged Biden to postpone the previous deadline for the final withdrawal.
In recent days, there have been chaotic scenes at and around Kabul airport in Afghanistan, and Biden has come under heavy criticism for his handling of the withdrawal. In response, Biden defended his decision to withdraw, saying problems were inevitable at the end of 20 years of U.S. operations in Afghanistan. He also said the Taliban are working together to help Americans leave Afghanistan, but “we have more difficulties in evacuating Afghan citizens who have ties to the United States.” ”
U.S. Defense Secretary Austin 18 also said: “We will make every effort to continue to resolve the conflict, and for the evacuation of people to create access to the airport.” But I am not in a way to expand the current operation into downtown Kabul. ”
Austin said there are about 4,500 U.S. troops in Kabul, “there is no hostile interaction with the Taliban, and our channels of communication with Taliban commanders remain open.” ”