Biden: U.S. troops will stay in Afghanistan until every American is out
U.S. troops will remain in Afghanistan until every American is evacuated, even if that means staying past the White House's Aug. 31 deadline, President Biden said in an interview with ABC News' George Stephanopoulos that was previewed Wednesday evening.
Why it matters: Around 10,000 to 15,000 Americans are still in the country now controlled by the Taliban according to various reports; between 50,000 and 65,000 Afghans and their families await evacuation assistance from the U.S, according to Biden.
- Pundits have called the Aug. 31 deadline unrealistic.
What he's saying: "The commitment holds to get everyone out that, in fact, we can get out and everyone who should come out. And that's the objective. That's what we're doing now. That's the path we're on. And I think we'll get there," Biden said.
- His goal is still to complete the mission by Aug. 31, but he conceded that it could take longer.
- "It depends on where we are and whether we can get — ramp these numbers up ... 7,000 a day coming out," Biden added. "If that's the case, they'll all be out."
- Though the U.S. is working to relocate allied Afghans and their families, processing for the necessary visas has been backlogged for months.
- Hundreds of desperate Afghans ran alongside a U.S. Air Force C-17 transport plane as it took off from Kabul on Monday. Several died attempting to cling onto the plane.
Go deeper... Evacuating Afghanistan