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U.S. relying on Taliban to let stranded Americans reach Kabul airport

The U.S. forces in Afghanistan lack the “capability” to pick up large numbers of Americans stranded in Kabul and bring them to the airport, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said on Wednesday, leaving the U.S. evacuation effort reliant on the Taliban’s willingness to let them travel safely.

Why it matters: Thousands of Americans remain in Afghanistan along with tens of thousands of Afghans waiting on Special Immigrant Visas, but those who aren’t in the airport — or even in Kabul — face a perilous journey to get there, and it’s unclear how long the window to evacuate them will remain open.

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