On Tuesday, the Pentagon reported that there are approximately 450 American citizens still in Afghanistan after the August military withdrawal. This number is greater than the Biden Administration previously claimed.
Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl gave the newest report. Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., had pointed out the “confusing” numbers being released by the administration since August 31.
Inhofe said, “One of the many confusing things about this whole thing is that we really don’t know how many Americans are left in Afghanistan”. “The administration’s number of U.S. citizens left in Afghanistan keeps changing. We all understand that. It’s very confusing,” he added.
He explained that the Biden Administration always said there were 100 to 200 citizens left in Afghanistan, but now says it “has already withdrawn 234 and is in contact with 363 others, 176 of whom want to leave” .
In terms of how many American citizens we estimate are currently in Afghanistan, the Department of State is in contact with 196 American citizens who are ready to depart –and arrangements are being made for them to do so, either via air or over ground – and another 243 American citizens have been contacted and are not ready to depart, either because they want to stay in Afghanistan or aren’t ready.Colin Kahl
In his response, Kahl detailed how many Americans were in Afghanistan and had already gotten out, and then reported how many were left. A total of 439 American citizens are still in Afghanistan as of this week. Last week, the State Department reported 363 citizens.
State Department spokesman Ned Price said that the number of Americans who actually wish to leave “has risen in recent days as more Americans in Afghanistan have decided to depart in light of our successful facilitation of dozens of departures in recent weeks”.