Blinken: The United States and the Taliban seek to facilitate additional flights

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said on Tuesday that the State Department is working in coordination with the Taliban to facilitate additional charter flights from Kabul for people trying to leave Afghanistan following the withdrawal of US military and diplomatic forces.

Blinken, who appeared Tuesday at a news conference with senior Qatari diplomats and defense officials, said the United States had been in contact with the Taliban in the “last few hours” to arrange additional charter flights from the Afghan capital.

The official said the Taliban offered guarantees of safe passage to those seeking to leave Afghanistan without proper travel documents. He stressed that the United States will make the Taliban fulfill its obligations.

Blinken said the United States believes there are “about 100” US citizens still in Afghanistan and seeking to leave the country. The State Department earlier said the number ranged from 100 to 200 people.

Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin are visiting Qatar to thank the country for helping to cross the tens of thousands of evacuees from Afghanistan after the Taliban took control of the country on August 15.

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Sacha Woodward

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