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Lethal firefight erupts at Kabul airport as evacuation chaos continues into second week

Afghan evacuees queue earlier than boarding Italy’s navy plane C130J throughout evacuation at Kabul’s?airport, Afghanistan, August 22, 2021.

Italian Ministry of Defence | by way of Reuters

A firefight broke out within the chaos at Kabul’s Hamid Karzai Worldwide Airport early Monday morning as international forces continued to help with evacuations and 1000’s of Afghans tried to flee the nation taken over by the Taliban per week in the past.

One Afghan safety personnel was killed and three others wounded when the firefight erupted between Afghan safety forces and unknown attackers, the official account of the German Joint Forces Operations Command stated in a tweet Monday.

The German navy additionally stated that American and German forces concerned within the development of the preventing, however that all the German forces on the bottom had been unhurt.

The final week at Kabul’s airport noticed photographs of desperation as moms handed their infants to international troopers over barbed-wire partitions and Afghan civilians clung to airplanes as they took off in determined makes an attempt to flee their nation.

The violence comes because the Joe Biden administration grapples with a torrent of criticism over the fallout of its pullout from Afghanistan.

Biden stated Sunday that the U.S. navy has evacuated 28,000 individuals from Afghanistan since Aug. 14, however many 1000’s of Individuals nonetheless stay there. The Pentagon stated final week that the U.S. navy couldn’t guarantee secure passage for Individuals to Kabul airport, regardless of a number of thousand forces now being on the bottom.  

On Sunday Biden activated the Civil Reserve Air Fleet, a rarely-used program whereby the Pentagon ordered civilian airways to supply planes to assist speed up Afghanistan evacuation efforts. The activation is for 18 plane from six airways.

The administration is contemplating extending the deadline for the entire troop withdrawal past its authentic Aug. 31 date, Biden added.

“Our hope is we is not going to have to increase, however there are going to be discussions, I think, on how far alongside we’re within the course of,” he stated.

However the Taliban is not going to prolong the Aug. 31 deadline, in keeping with reporting by Reuters citing two nameless Taliban sources. The sources added that no Western authorities had contacted the group about extending the deadline.

Learn extra on the developments in Afghanistan:

Chatting with press throughout a go to to Singapore on Monday, Vice President Kamal Harris stated, “Proper now we’re singularly targeted on evacuating Americans, Afghans who labored with us and Afghans who’re susceptible, together with ladies and youngsters.”

“We have now a accountability and we really feel a deep dedication to creating certain that folk who helped us are secure,” Harris added, saying that there needs to be a “sturdy evaluation of what occurred” later.

Regardless of her assurances, Afghan workers working on the U.S. embassy in Kabul really feel “deeply disheartened” by the U.S.’s evacuation efforts, in keeping with a diplomatic cable seen by NBC Information.

The Taliban, with which the U.S. had negotiated a cease-fire settlement, made a sequence of beautiful good points throughout the nation and at last seized the facility heart of Kabul on Aug. 15, taking basically full management of the nation inside roughly 10 days.

As a consequence, the Islamic extremist militants now have entry to billions of {dollars} value of American weapons surrendered by the Afghan navy, which the U.S. educated and outfitted for 20 years.

And tens of 1000’s of Afghans have made determined makes an attempt to flee, significantly those that labored with U.S. personnel and worry reprisal killings by the Taliban. Whereas Biden has stated these Afghans might be supported, advocacy teams say that as much as 20,000 stay within the nation, unable to board an evacuation flight out resulting from bureaucratic limitations or lack of secure passage to Kabul airport.

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