Secretary of State Antony Blinken opened his press conference on Wednesday by speaking for about ten minutes about the number of Americans in Afghanistan who “want to leave” the country.
Blinken said the State Department is in direct contact with 500 Americans trying to evacuate, and the department is also sorting through another list of 1,000 contacts to figure out how many are actually U.S. citizens and how many citizens want to evacuate. Some, he said, may want to stay with family in Afghanistan.
Blinken also acknowledged the State Department could be unaware of some Americans trapped in Afghanistan. He noted that the U.S. government doesn’t track the movement of Americans abroad and added: “There could be other Americans in Afghanistan who never enrolled with the embassy, who ignored public evacuation notices, and have not yet identified themselves to us.”
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