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Biden: US sticking to August 31 deadline for Afghanistan


Biden: US sticking to August 31 deadline for Afghanistan
US President Joe Biden (GP)

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Washington – United States President Joe Biden says the US is “on pace” to meet the August 31 deadline for evacuations, despite previous calls from allies for an extension.

“The sooner we finish the better,” he said.

Some American troops have already been withdrawn, US media report – although evacuations are not affected.

At least 70 700 people have been airlifted from Kabul, which fell to the Taliban nine days ago.

The militants have opposed any extension to the evacuation deadline.

President Biden said: “The Taliban have been taking steps to help get our people out,” adding that the international community would judge the Taliban by their actions.

“None of us are going to take the Taliban’s word for it,” he added.

Biden said the airlift had to come to end soon because of an increasing threat from the Islamic State group in Afghanistan.

The longer the US stayed in the country, he said, there was an “acute and growing risk of an attack” by the group. (BBC)