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Afghanistan: Variety of Individuals searching for evacuation earlier than deadline ‘beneath 250,’ official says

The State Division on Monday mentioned there may be “nonetheless a small quantity” of Individuals who stay in Afghanistan who’re searching for to be evacuated, simply hours earlier than President Biden’s Aug. 31 deadline to withdraw all U.S. troops from the nation, Fox Information has realized. 

A senior State Division official informed Fox Information on Monday that there’s nonetheless a “small quantity” of Individuals who’re in Afghanistan. That official put the variety of Individuals at “beneath 250,” including that some further Individuals have departed Afghanistan in current hours. 

PENTAGON ON AFGHANISTAN: ‘PARTICULARLY DANGEROUS TIME’ AHEAD OF BIDEN WITHDRAWAL DEADLINE

Secretary of State Antony Blinken is predicted to element the U.S. method to evacuating these remaining Individuals, an official mentioned, including that the administration’s “first precedence are Americans who could change their thoughts and resolve they want to go away.” 

The official added that the State Division can be dedicated to evacuating “those that labored with us,” referring to Afghan “companions.” 

The White Home mentioned Monday that since Aug. 14, when the mission started, the U.S. has evacuated and facilitated the evacuation of roughly 116,700 individuals. And because the finish of July, the White Home mentioned the U.S. has relocated practically 122,300 individuals from Afghanistan.

The president had licensed 6,000 U.S. troops to deploy to Afghanistan to help within the evacuation mission, because the Taliban is pushing to revive the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan – the formal identify of the nation below Taliban rule earlier than militants had been ousted by U.S.-led forces within the wake of the 9/11 assaults. The assaults on Sept. 11, 2001, had been orchestrated by al Qaeda whereas it was being sheltered by the Taliban in Afghanistan.

The Pentagon, on Monday, didn’t present the present variety of U.S. troops on the bottom, however maintained that the withdrawal would happen as deliberate. 

PACE OF US EVACUATION FLIGHTS FROM AFGHANISTAN SLOWING ONE DAY BEFORE BIDEN’S DEADLINE: OFFICIALS

As for the airport in Kabul the place the U.S. army has been evacuating Individuals and susceptible Afghans, the Pentagon mentioned it could “stay operational by our ultimate flights.” 

“What it appears like after we’re gone, I’d simply level you to what the secretary of state mentioned,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby mentioned Monday, referring to the State Division’s assertion signed by practically 100 international locations, in addition to NATO and the European Union, mentioned final week that they had obtained “assurances” from the Taliban that individuals with journey paperwork will nonetheless have the ability to go away the nation. 

The Taliban has mentioned they may permit regular journey after the U.S. withdrawal is accomplished on Tuesday and so they assume management of the airport.

“This isn’t a U.S. army operate, and never a U.S. army duty as soon as we’ve got accomplished the retrograde,” Kirby mentioned. 

In the meantime, the White Home, on Monday, mentioned President Biden “stands by his choice to convey our women and men residence from Afghanistan.” 

The deadline for all U.S. troops and diplomats to be out of Afghanistan is 3:29 p.m. EST Tuesday – 11:59 p.m. native time in Kabul, U.S. protection officers informed Fox Information. It should mark the primary time in practically 20 years that no U.S. troops can be on the bottom in Afghanistan.

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