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Biden rejects Afghanistan evacuation extension deadline past August 31

i24NEWS

clock 2 min read

US President Joe Biden speaks in the East Room of the White House, in Washington, DC, on August 20, 2021.
AP Photo/Manuel Balce CenetaUS President Joe Biden speaks in the East Room of the White House, in Washington, DC, on August 20, 2021.

US president made decision after consulting with national security team

US President Joe Biden has decided to not extend the deadline for evacuating Americans and Afghan allies past August 31, the Associated Press reported Tuesday, citing an administration official.

Biden made the decision after reportedly consulting with his national security team ahead of a virtual meeting on Tuesday afternoon with leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) countries to discuss the unfolding crisis in Afghanistan following the withdrawal of US forces and the Taliban takeover of the country.

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Biden chose to stick with Tuesday's deadline for a full withdrawal that was set before the Islamist insurgency completed its takeover on August 15.

The decision comes as the US increased its round-the-clock airlift of evacuees to its highest level on Tuesday.

The Taliban said on Tuesday that they wanted all foreign evacuations from the country finished by the August 31 deadline and they would not agree to an extension.

At the G7 meeting, the world leaders posed as the "first condition" that the Taliban "guarantee a safe passage" for people trying to leave the country "until August 31 and beyond," as stated by the chair of the meeting, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.