Final days of the Kabul airlift
August 29, 2021 - The U.S. military has completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan, leaving behind at least 100,000 at-risk Afghans who worked with Western troops during the country’s 20-year war.
The global rescue mission by the United States and its allies has evacuated more than 182,000 people -- including western citizens and at-risk Afghans -- since the Taliban claimed Kabul.
The White House said Monday that in 24 hours from Sunday morning, the U.S. evacuated 1,200 people from Kabul, with 26 military flights and two coalition flights carrying evacuees out of Kabul. From early Saturday into early Sunday, roughly 2,900 people were evacuated, with 32 military flights and nine coalition aircraft.
Since the end of July, the U.S. has relocated more than 123,000 civilians, including 5,400 American citizens, U.S. Central Command leader Gen. Kenneth McKenzie told reporters during a Pentagon briefing Monday.
On Thursday, Qatar said it had helped evacuate more than 40,000 people to Doha and “evacuation efforts will continue in consultation with international partners.” The United Arab Emirates said it has helped evacuate 36,500 people to date.
Britain ended its evacuation flights Saturday. Britain’s ambassador to Afghanistan, Sir Laurie Bristow, said: “we haven’t forgotten the people who still need to leave.”
“We’ll continue to do everything we can to help them. Nor have we forgotten the brave, decent people of Afghanistan. They deserve to live in peace and security,” Bristow said.
America’s longest war took the lives of nearly 2,500 U.S. troops and those of an estimated 240,000 Afghans and cost some $2 trillion.