Kamala Harris says the U.S. is 'singularly focused' on evacuating Americans and Afghan allies

Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong welcomes US Vice President Kamala Harris (L), at the Istana, Singapore, August 23, 2021. Evelyn Hockstein | AFP | Getty Images
SINGAPORE: The United States' main focus in Afghanistan is to evacuate American citizens and Afghan allies, as well as vulnerable groups, following the Taliban's return. This was stated Monday by Vice President Kamala Harris. Harris spoke with reporters at a joint press conference held alongside Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. This was following an earlier meeting in which the leaders discussed a wide range of topics, including climate change and supply chain issues. Harris responded to a reporter's inquiry about U.S. involvement in Afghanistan. He stated that "right now we are singularly focussed on evacuating American citizens and Afghans, who worked with us, and Afghans who were vulnerable, including women, children." Harris said that "we have a responsibility" and that "we feel a deep commitment towards making sure that those who helped us are safe." Harris also stated that later, there should be "robust analysis" of what happened.

There is growing criticism of the Biden administration's handling of U.S. withdrawals efforts. These have thrown Afghanistan into chaos after the civilian government collapsed and was overthrown by the Taliban. Many people have fled to Kabul in search of safety. Joe Biden, President of the United States, stated that the country still has a long way to go in evacuating Kabul. He also said that there could be many problems. During a White House press conference, the president stated that the evacuation of thousands from Kabul will be difficult and painful regardless of when it began or when it ended. He stated that "our hope" is that the Aug. 31 deadline for Afghanistan's exit will be met.

At stake: U.S. Credibility