Biden: Afghanistan evacuation on track to finish by Aug. 31 deadline
U.S. President Joe Biden told G-7 leaders during an emergency meeting on Tuesday that he will keep the timeline previously set for the full U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, though the U.S. is also making contingency plans should an extension proves necessary.
“We are currently on pace to finish by August the 31st,” Biden said from the West Wing of the White House.
“In addition, I’ve asked the Pentagon and the State Department for contingency plans to adjust the timetable should that become necessary,” Biden said.
The president warned that staying longer carries serious risks for allied troops and civilians, CNBC reported.
The U.S. has evacuated or helped to get approximately 70,700 people out of Afghanistan since Aug. 14, according to figures released by the White House Tuesday evening. Since the end of July, the U.S. has relocated nearly 75,900 people.
As of Tuesday, approximately 4,000 American passport holders and their families have been airlifted from Afghanistan though there are still several thousand Americans believed to be awaiting evacuation.