In the East Room, Washington, DC, Joe Biden answers questions regarding the ongoing US military evacuations.
On Sunday, President Joe Biden said that the U.S. still has a long way to go and there are many things that could go wrong amid the chaos surrounding the evacuation of Afghan allies and Americans from Kabul following the Taliban's takeover of Afghanistan one week ago.
During a White House press conference, the president stated that "The evacuation from Kabul of thousands of people is going to be difficult and painful no matter when they started"
It would have been true, if we had started one month ago or one month from now. Biden stated that there is no way to evacuate so many people without pain.
Critics are levelling at the Biden administration for its handling of U.S. withdrawals from Afghanistan. The earlier announced withdrawal has been hampered by chaos.
Many thousands of people have crowded Kabul's airport. Some even fell to their deaths while trying to flee the country. According to the British military, seven Afghan civilians were killed trying to enter Kabul's airport.
According to the president, U.S. forces are making progress in evacuations from Kabul. Biden stated that 33,000 people had been evacuated from Kabul since July, with 28,000 of them since August 14, and 11,000 this weekend.
He reiterated that Americans should be the first priority in any evacuation plan for Afghanistan and promised that every American who wishes to return home would do so. Biden stated that his administration is currently in discussions to extend the Aug. 31 deadline for Afghanistan's withdrawal, but that "our hope" is that it will not be necessary to do so.
Biden also supported his decision to withdraw the U.S. troops from the country, saying that it was the right, rational, and logical decision.