Biden administration thanks two African countries – Rwanda and Uganda – for supporting efforts to evacuate U.S. citizens, partners, and at-Risk Afghans from Kabul

U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken on Friday thanked allies and partners for supporting U.S. efforts to evacuate U.S. citizens, partners, and at-Risk Afghans from Afghanistan.

In his statement, Blinken thanked two African countries, Rwanda and Uganda, for making “generous offers regarding the relocation efforts for at-risk Afghans.” 

“I would like to give special thanks to our partners around the globe who have been instrumental in this operation.  Bahrain, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Qatar, Tajikistan, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, and Uzbekistan have been, or will soon be, transiting Americans or, in some circumstances, others through their territories to safety,” Blinken said in his August 20 statement. “Albania, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Chile, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Mexico, Poland, Qatar, Rwanda, and Uganda have also made generous offers regarding the relocation efforts for at-risk Afghans.” 

President Biden’s top diplomat said the United States “deeply appreciate the support they have offered, and are proud to partner with them in our shared support of the Afghan people.”

“We are encouraged by other countries that are also considering providing support. We have no higher priority than the safety and security of U.S. citizens overseas and to fulfill our commitments to citizens of partner nations and at-risk Afghans,” he said.

Blinken added that the “massive effort would not be possible without the tireless commitment of the Department’s workforce. We have more work to do, but their dedication to service is of the highest order. I would also like to thank partners from across the U.S. interagency for their cooperation and support of our collective efforts.”

The United States has evacuated and facilitated the evacuation of nearly 82,300 people from Afghanistan since August 14, and about 87,900 since end of July, a White House official said on Wednesday morning.

The official said in the past 24 hours, a total of 19,000 people were evacuated from Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan. The evacuations were carried out on 42 U.S. military flights.

“From August 24 at 3:00 AM EDT to August 25 at 3:00 AM EDT, a total of approximately 19,000 people were evacuated from Kabul. This is the result of 42 US military flights (37 C-17s and 5 C-130s) which carried approximately 11,200 evacuees, and 48 coalition flights which carried 7,800 people,” the official said.

“Since August 14, the U.S. has evacuated and facilitated the evacuation of approximately 82,300 people on US military and coalition flights. Since the end of July, we have re-located approximately 87,900 people on US military and coalition flights,” added the official.

But it is believed that thousands of Americans and Afghans who worked for the United States during the war remain in Afghanistan and are expected to be evacuated before the end of the day on August 31 when the U.S. has said it will be leaving Afghanistan.

Chief White House Correspondent for

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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