On Sunday, U.S. President Joe Biden said that the United States-led evacuation of Americans, Afghans, and others from the Hamid Karzai Airport accelerated this weekend, while it remains vulnerable to Taliban threats. The president said that the discussions are in progress among military officials about possibly extending the airlift operation beyond the 31st August deadline of Biden.
Since 14th August, one day before the Taliban took over Kabul, the airlift operation evacuated around twenty-eight thousand people, the president adds. Biden also said that included eleven thousand people who left Kabul in a thirty-six-hour duration this weekend, but he didn’t share details of his claim. Moreover, the number appeared to include flights by non-United States military and charter planes along with the American Air Force C-130 and C-17 transport aircraft.
Besides, the American military controls and manages air traffic on both the military and civil sides of the airport. Tens of thousands of evacuees remain to join the airlift flights, which slowed because of the U.S. bureaucracy hurdles and security issues. The U.S. president declared with sharing a complete explanation that the United States forces managed to increase access to the airport for American nationals and other people seeking evacuation flights.
Pentagon Ordered six U.S. Commercial Airlines for Evacuation Mission
Biden later added that they discussed the issue with the Taliban also. As a result, they showed their cooperative behavior to extend some of the perimeters. He also said that the American groups in Kabul are shifted safely and efficiently to the airport. Earlier Sunday, the government officials said the American military is considering creative ways to shift people – seeking evacuation – to the Kabul airport. Likewise, on Sunday, the Pentagon ordered six United States commercial airlines to help transport evacuees from temporary sites outside of Afghanistan.
Biden Responded to the Criticism of Republican Leaders
Responding to the criticism from several Republican leaders, the U.S. President said no Afghan evacuees shifted to the U.S. directly without prior screening. He added that the officials are screening them in third countries. Biden, along with his top aides, repeatedly raised their concern that the Taliban in Afghanistan will try to exploit chaos across the Kabul airport. An anonymous United States defense official said that those people flew on a total of twenty-three evacuation flights – fourteen by C-17 transports and nine on-board C-130 cargo aircraft.
Once screened and cleared, we will welcome these Afghans to their new home in the United States with open arms. We are a nation that has been strengthened by generations of immigrants adding their unique talents to our American tapestry.
That’s who we are. pic.twitter.com/Ar9nbXU5EY
— President Biden (@POTUS) August 23, 2021
It represents an increase from sixteen hundred flown out aboard American military jets in the last twenty-four hours. Still, it remains far less the five thousand to nine thousand that the military says it has the ability to airlift daily. During the previous twenty-four hours, around 3900 people airlifted on non-American flights. However, the Biden government has not shared a proper estimation of the total number of Americans seeking evacuation from Afghanistan. But some put the overall number between ten thousand to fifteen thousand.