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State Dept. dismisses reports of Taliban blocking Kabul airport

The Condition Department’s top rated spokesman insisted Friday that US officers had only received “a smaller quantity of reports” that People in Afghanistan are being prevented from reaching Kabul’s global airport by a ring of Taliban checkpoints.

“We have not obtained a huge quantity — in truth, we have only obtained a compact quantity and sporadic experiences of individuals whose passage has been impeded,” spokesman Ned Rate informed reporters.

Price’s assertion was at odds with President Joe Biden’s claim earlier Friday that the White Home understood of “no circumstance the place American citizens are carrying an American passport and are striving to get as a result of to the airport.” Just after that statement was challenged by a NPR reporter, the president modified tack, declaring that “to the finest of our information, the Taliban checkpoints, they are letting through people today demonstrating American passports” and blaming what he called the “mad hurry of non-Americans” for blocking would-be evacuees from acquiring by way of.

Rate insisted to reporters that the problem was staying dealt with “with the utmost worth,” introducing that US officials had contacted the Taliban “through the two political and armed forces channels.”

Taliban fighters stand guard at a checkpoint in the Wazir Akbar Khan community in Kabul, Afghanistan on August 18, 2021.

“We are engaging with the Taliban to do every thing we can to aid secure passage protected passage for People in america, safe and sound passage for 3rd-country nationals, but also, of system, protected passage for Afghans who may well be at threat — and quite a few of these harrowing stories are emanating from Afghans who are getting resistance,” he said.

Having said that, that statement contradicted Protection Secretary Lloyd Austin, who confirmed to Home lawmakers on a conference contact subsequent Biden’s remarks that Us residents experienced been overwhelmed by customers of the Taliban though hoping to move the checkpoints, a condition of affairs Austin known as “unacceptable.”

Taliban fighters block a fenced entrance to Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan on August 16, 2021.
Taliban fighters block a fenced entrance to Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan on August 16, 2021.
Anadolu Agency by using Getty Pictures

Price’s assertion also countered a report from ABC Information correspondent Ian Pannell in Kabul, who told anchor David Muir that he knew of American citizens who had introduced their US passports at a checkpoint and “were overwhelmed by the Taliban with the rubber fan belt from a car.”

“It just appears to be the reality and the rhetoric are miles apart,” Pannell claimed. “I’m not pretty sure what advice the president’s getting, but the reality on the ground is that these people who are in panic of their lives cannot get by way of.”

Afghans gather on a roadside near the military part of the airport in Kabul on August 20, 2021.
State Department spokesperson Ned Value states they are functioning with Taliban officials on making certain a harmless passage for Us residents and Afghan evacuees.
AFP through Getty Illustrations or photos

Meanwhile, Afghan-Individuals have explained to The Article that Taliban fighters have tried to confiscate their US passports and other identification papers.

“I received to the [airport] gates and was about to demonstrate my passport, but the Taliban got it, and he stated, ‘You are not permitted to go through’ and wouldn’t give it again,” reported one person who served for a number of yrs as a military services interpreter during the war and lives in the US, but requested anonymity for safety causes. “I was lucky a US Maritime was proper there and forced him to give it back again.”

A Dutch tank and transport aircraft carrying around 180 people from Afghanistan lands at Schiphol Airport, near Amsterdam on August 20, 2021.
A Dutch tank and transport plane carrying all over 180 people from Afghanistan lands at Schiphol Airport, around Amsterdam on August 20, 2021.
ANP/AFP by means of Getty Photos
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin confirmed that People in america in Afghanistan are currently being assaulted by Taliban insurgents.

Even with the harrowing stories, best Biden administration officers have insisted all 7 days that the Taliban was playing a constructive position in the evacuation of Afghanistan by making certain “safe passage” to Hamid Karzai Intercontinental Airport — one thing the State Department has continuously informed Us citizens it could not ensure.

“The Taliban have told us the same thing they have claimed publicly, that they have no intention of impeding our functions or of standing in the way of these who are trying to get passage to the airport,” Cost repeated Friday.

The spokesman later on claimed that the Taliban “have confident us that they will enable Afghans who want to leave the region to do so right after August 31 … They say that they will allow safe passage to any person who needs to reach the airport.

“Again, these are the phrases of the Taliban,” Rate went on. “We consider them for what they are. But we are heading, with each other with our global partners, to do everything we can to see to it that they make great on their text and at the exact same time that they realize the implications of not undertaking so.”

With reporting by Juliegrace Brufke and Hollie McKay

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