As many as 80,000 Americans and Afghans who have worked for the U.S. government and military still need to be evacuated from Kabul, but the U.S. has withdrawn only about 9,000 people from Kabul since the Taliban took control of the country, the New York Post reported Thursday.
Cbs News reported that more than 10,000 Americans were among the 80,000 people. So far, however, the Biden administration has refused to give an estimate of how many U.S. citizens would need to be evacuated.
The U.S. is trying to restore the continuing chaos at Kabul airport, with reports that access has been blocked as thousands of panicked Afghans try to enter the airport, making it difficult for foreigners and U.S. allies to get close to evacuation flights.
Reported that at least 5,200 U. S. troops are currently stationed at Kabul airport to assist in the evacuation of relevant personnel. The Taliban, on the other hand, have been checking the documents of evacuees outside the airport and then releasing them into U.S.-controlled areas.
There have been recent reports that Taliban checkpoints have refused to allow some people access to the airport and resorted to violence. But Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said he did not see the Taliban violence against U.S. personnel, nor did they see the Taliban trying to prevent U.S. citizens from leaving the country.
Afghans most likely to be threatened by the Taliban are now pleading with the Biden administration to speed up the evacuation, the report said. Marina Kilpinski Legley, the U.S. director of the nonprofit Ascend, told The Associated Press: “If we don’t solve this problem, we’re actually sentencing people to death.” ”
U.S. Defense Secretary Arsement Austen also said Wednesday that the U.S. is not moving quickly enough to withdraw. He also said the U.S. military does not have enough troops and firepower to expand its current mission to locate Americans and afghans at risk from the airport and escort them out. “I don’t have the ability to go out there and expand my operations into Kabul at the moment,” Austin said. ”
According to the New York Post, Biden has vowed to keep U.S. troops in Kabul until all Americans leave — even if that means the original August 31 withdrawal deadline. Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen said the U.S. should “withdraw all its troops” from Afghanistan by September 11, but promised that the Taliban would not attack U.S. forces, The Independent reported Wednesday.