Daily US Times: President Biden has acknowledged the mass evacuation of US citizens and Afghan allies from Kabul airport is “not without risk of loss.”
Mr Biden said while speaking from the White House that the US had rescued 13,000 people to date in “one of the largest, most difficult airlifts in history”.
But Mr Biden’s suggestion that US evacuees weren’t being hampered by the Taliban, which was contradicted by his own defence secretary Lloyd Austin.
Mr Biden has faced international criticism over the Taliban’s takeover and cut short his holiday to address the crisis.
He said: “Any American who wants to come home, we will get you home.”
Taking questions from reporters, Mr Biden said the US military would make the “same commitment” to 50-65,000 Afghan allies hoping to leave, but added that the evacuation of American citizens was the “priority”.
Biden said: “Make no mistake, this evacuation mission is dangerous. It involves risks to our armed forces and it’s being conducted under difficult circumstances.”
He also said it would not be necessary to send US soldiers into the Afghan capital Kabul to evacuate trapped Americans, claiming that the Taliban was permitting airport entry to anyone holding a US passport.
However, numerous reports from the Afghan capital have suggested US citizens are having trouble reaching the airport. And in a briefing on Friday, Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin told lawmakers that Americans trying to leave Afghanistan have been beaten by Taliban fighters, reports Politico.
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