U.S. says it has evacuated more than 80,000 people from Afghanistan

U.S. says it has evacuated more than 80,000 people from Afghanistan

As of Wednesday, the United States had evacuated or helped evacuate more than 80,000 people from Afghanistan since the fall of the country’s government and the Taliban takeover earlier this month, a White House spokesman said.

Updated figures, shared Wednesday morning , show that approximately 19,000 people were able to leave Kabul, Afghanistan’s capital, in the previous 24 hours.

U.S. says it has evacuated more than 80,000 people from Afghanistan

White House spokesman Chris Meagher said some 82,300 people had been evacuated with U.S. assistance since Aug. 14, the same weekend the Taliban seized power and the national government collapsed amid the planned U.S. military withdrawal.

Several thousand more people successfully left the country in the preceding weeks, officials said.

Also Wednesday, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said about 4,500 of the 6,000 U.S. citizens believed to be in Afghanistan on Aug. 14 have since been evacuated.

After a clumsy start and heavy criticism, the U.S. evacuation of Americans, Afghan allies and refugees from Kabul has moved quickly.

For example, the White House said this week, in the 24-hour span from Sunday to Monday, 28 U.S. military flights “evacuated approximately 10,400 people from Kabul. In addition, 61 coalition aircraft evacuated approximately 5,900 people.”

Meanwhile, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported Sunday that Afghan refugees had begun arriving at Wisconsin’s Fort McCoy.

According to a press release , the new arrivals in Wisconsin are special immigrant visa applicants along with their families and others at risk.

Vulnerable Afghans are being temporarily housed at three military installations in the United States, according to the release.

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