US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin during the US Senate Armed Services Committee hearing.
US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin during the US Senate Armed Services Committee hearing.

No payments made to Taliban during evacuations: US

ANI | Updated: Sep 29, 2021 23:09 IST


Washington DC [US], September 29 (ANI): US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said they were not aware of any payments made to the Taliban by the US at any time during last month's evacuation.
During the Senate hearing on Wednesday, top Pentagon officials said that they were not aware of any payments to the Taliban at any time during last month's evacuation.
"To my knowledge, there was not," Austin told a US Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the US withdrawal from Afghanistan. When asked the same question, Milley replied: "I have no knowledge of any money that transmitted from any element of the United States government to the Taliban."

Austin informed that the US planned to evacuate between 70,000-80,000 people. "We evacuated more than 124,000."
"Not a single [military aircraft] sortie was missed for maintenance, fuel, or logistical problems. It was the largest airlift conducted in U.S. history, and it was executed in just 17 days," he added.
As we consider these tactical issues today, Austin said the US must also ask ourselves some equally tough questions about the wider war itself, and pause to think about the lessons that we have learned over the past 20 years.
The Taliban seized control of Afghanistan after entering the capital Kabul on August 15 that led to the collapse of the US-backed government there. Soon after the Taliban takeover of the capital city, US and coalition forces conducted large-scale evacuation operations from the country.
In a matter of few weeks, thousands of people were evacuated from Afghanistan including foreign nationals and vulnerable Afghan citizens. (ANI)

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