Sec. of State Blinken Denies U.S. Gave Taliban ‘Kill List,’ Says It’s ‘Simply Not the Case’

Secretary of State Antony Blinken strongly disputed studies that the United States government had provided what’s been described as a “kill list” to the Taliban, stating on Sunday morning that “it’s merely not the case.”

Simply hours after a deadly suicide bombing attack killed 13 U.S. service members outdoors the Kabul airport, Politico reported on Thursday that U.S. officers gave the Taliban an inventory of Americans, residents and Afghan allies to grant entry by way of the surface perimeter of the airport, which is managed by Taliban militants.

The report prompted quick backlash and outrage from lawmakers and army officers, with many calling for resignations of Biden administration officers over what they felt was successfully a “kill listing.” President Joe Biden, when pressed on Thursday by reporters on the story, didn’t explicitly deny that the U.S. has handed over names to the Taliban. On the similar time, he mentioned he wasn’t positive there have been particular lists.

Showing on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday, Blinken was way more forceful in his denial of the story.

“A few of these lists of individuals that you simply’re attempting to get in another country you have needed to give to the Taliban. And I do know you guys have some — that you simply suppose a few of this has been a bit overreported or exaggerated,” NBC anchor Chuck Todd requested. “However given the Haqqani community’s ties to the Taliban, how are you going to ensure any listing you share of Afghans who helped Individuals will not be used for horrendous causes by the Haqqani community or others?”

The secretary of state responded that “it’s merely not the case,” including that “the concept that we shared lists of Individuals or others with the Taliban is solely flawed” and that they didn’t put these attempting to depart the nation in danger.

“What was shared?” Todd interjected.

“So, in particular situations while you’re attempting to get a bus or a bunch of individuals by way of, and you’ll want to present a manifest to do this, as a result of significantly in instances the place individuals haven’t got the mandatory credentials on them or paperwork on them, then you definitely would—you may share names on an inventory of individuals on the bus to allow them to be assured that these are those who we’re wanting to usher in,” the secretary replied. “And by definition, that is precisely what’s occurred.”

He continued: “We have gotten 5,500 Americans out of Afghanistan. And to the extent that in a person case with a selected group or a bus to confirm that the individuals on the bus or in that group have been individuals who have been supposed to come back out, Americans, particularly once more, in the event that they lacked the appropriate doc with them, that is what we might do. However the concept that we put anybody in any additional jeopardy is solely flawed.”

White Home nationwide safety advisor Jake Sullivan was additionally confronted in regards to the Politico report throughout an look on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday morning, and Sullivan primarily reiterated what Blinken mentioned on Meet the Press.

“We’ve aggressively, decisively disputed that report,” Sullivan instructed host Jake Tapper. “We’ve given no listing of all of the American [Special Immigrant Visa] holders to the Taliban or another sort of large listing.”

Sullivan went on to insist that American officers have solely verified names on buses going by way of checkpoints with the Taliban, including that the “concept that we’re handing some listing to the Taliban is unfounded and inaccurate” and that the reporting is “irresponsible.”

Elsewhere in Blinken’s Meet the Press interview, the secretary of state mentioned that it was “unlikely” that america can have an “on-the-ground diplomatic presence” in Afghanistan following the Aug. 31 withdrawal deadline. He did state, nonetheless, that the “dedication to assist individuals go away Afghanistan” who usually are not out by September “endures” and there are “mechanisms to assist facilitate the continued departure of individuals from Afghanistan in the event that they select to depart.” | Sec. of State Blinken Denies U.S. Gave Taliban ‘Kill Listing,’ Says It’s ‘Merely Not the Case’


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