US under pressure over Kabul evacuation deadline

US under pressure over evacuation deadline
Afghan refugees have been arriving in the US. Source: AFP
2 Min Read

Daily US Times: The United States is under pressure to allow more time for evacuation from Afghanistan, currently controlled by the Taliban, as the deadline for its withdrawal nears.

Under an agreement with the Taliban, the US forces in Afghanistan must leave by 31 August.

But the United Kingdom (UK), Germany and France all raised the possibility of allowing more time ahead of a summit on Tuesday.

President Biden is under pressure as ally countries are expecting extended deadlines from him. Mr Biden is set to decide within the next 24 hours whether he is extending the timeline for withdrawal, an official told Reuters news agency.

However the Taliban has warned that any extension of the deadline would violate the agreed deal between the parties and warned of consequences if forces remained.

Tens of thousands of people have been evacuated from the Kabul airport, the only exit route from the country after the capital fell into Taliban, but others seeking to flee remain crammed in or near the city’s airport, which is guarded by US soldiers and their allies.

Many of the Afghans are fleeing in fear of Taliban revenge, particularly those who worked with foreign forces. They are in fear of Taliban, which imposed a harsh version of Islamic law when in power from 1996 to 2001.

The Foreign Minister of France, Jean-Yves Le Drian said: “We are concerned about the deadline set by the United States on August 31. Additional time is needed to complete ongoing operations.”

Heiko Maas, Germany’s Foreign Minister, said he had discussed keeping Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport open beyond the deadline with Nato allies and the Taliban.

You may read: People at Kabul airport flee Taliban with just a suitcase