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Blinken denies that Biden administration jeopardized safety of Americans, allies in Afghanistan


Secretary of State Antony Blinken in an interview on Sunday denied that the Biden administration had jeopardized the safety of Americans and allies in Afghanistan after a report that a list of names had been provided to the Taliban in an effort to guarantee their passage to the Kabul airport.

“The idea that we’ve done anything to put at further risk those that we’re trying to help leave the country is simply wrong. And the idea that we shared lists of Americans or others with the Taliban is simply wrong,” Blinken told host Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“What was shared?” Todd asked.

“In specific instances when you’re trying to get a bus or a group of people through, and you need to show a manifest to do that, because particularly in cases where people don’t have the necessary credentials on them or documents on them, then you would — you’ll share names on a list of people on the bus so they can be assured that those are people that we’re looking to bring in. And by definition, that’s exactly what’s happened,” Blinken explained.

Blinken added that the administration had gotten 5,500 Americans out of the country and pushed back at the notion that officials had put anyone in jeopardy.

“And to the extent that in an individual case with a particular group or a bus to verify that the people on the bus or in that group were people who were supposed to come out, American citizens, especially again, if they lacked the right document with them, that’s what we would do. But the idea that we put anyone in any further jeopardy is simply wrong,” Blinken said.

His comments come after Politic reported that the joint U.S. military and diplomatic coordination team at the Kabul airport had provided a list of people to the Taliban in the early days of the evacuation that the U.S. wanted to evacuate from the country. 

On Friday, State Department spokesperson Ned Price had also disputed the report saying during a news briefing, “The notion that we are just providing names upon names of individuals who may stay behind in Afghanistan or in a way that would expose anyone to additional risk– that is simply false.”

Tags Afghanistan Antony Blinken Antony Blinken Chuck Todd Chuck Todd Sunday shows Taliban

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