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Biden: Kabul evacuation among 'most difficult' in history

AFP

clock 2 min read

US President Joe Biden speaks about the evacuation of American citizens, their families, SIV applicants and vulnerable Afghans in the East Room of the White House, in Washington, DC on August 20, 2021.
AP Photo/Manuel Balce CenetaUS President Joe Biden speaks about the evacuation of American citizens, their families, SIV applicants and vulnerable Afghans in the East Room of the White House, in Washington, DC on August 20, 2021.

President says US has evacuated 13,000 people from Afghanistan since August 14

US President Joe Biden said Friday he could not guarantee the final outcome of the emergency evacuation from Kabul's airport, calling it one of the most "difficult" airlift operations ever.

“This is one of the largest, most difficult airlifts in history,” Biden said in a televised address from the White House. "I cannot promise what the final outcome will be."

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The president said US forces have airlifted 13,000 people out of Afghanistan since August 14, and 18,000 since July, with thousands more evacuated on private charter flights "facilitated by the US government."

Biden assured that the difficult conditions of the evacuation of thousands of civilians from Kabul and the scenes of chaos at the airport did not affect the credibility of the United States on the international scene.

Our allies in the world "do not question our credibility," assured Biden.

The president said that the US was in "close operational coordination with NATO" on the evacuation operation in Kabul and was "also facilitating flights for our allies and our partners."

During a previous speech delivered at the White House on Monday, Biden acknowledged that the Taliban takeover unfolded "more quickly than we anticipated" while saying that there is "never a good time to withdraw US forces."