Afghanistan: Biden sticks to Kabul withdrawal deadline rejecting Europe's appeals
17:36, Wednesday, 25 August, 2021
U.S. President Joe Biden declared Tuesday he is sticking to his August 31 deadline for completing a risky airlift of Americans, endangered Afghans and others seeking to escape Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. The decision defies allied leaders who want to give the evacuation more time and opens Biden to criticism that he caved to Taliban deadline demands. “Every day we’re on the ground is another day that we know ISIS-K is seeking to target the airport and attack both us and allied forces and innocent civilians,” Biden said at the White House, referring to the Islamic State group's Afghanistan affiliate, which is known for staging suicide attacks on civilians. He said the Taliban are cooperating and security is holding despite a number of violent incidents. “But it’s a tenuous situation,” he said, adding, “We run a serious risk of it breaking down as time goes on. ”The Taliban reiterated on Tuesday that that there would be "no extensions" to the August 31 deadline set by the US for the withdrawal of its troops.