President Biden plans to send an additional 1,000 troops to Afghanistan following the Taliban’s takeover of Kabul Sunday, according to reports.
The move to return thousands of American troops to the country brings the total number of US forces there to 6,000, according to NBC News, and comes as the Islamic militant group expands its control in the country, including the seizure of the presidential palace in the capital city.
Biden had initially planned to keep just 1,000 troops in place for the withdrawal – but administration officials quickly judged that total to be insufficient. The additional troops had been headed to Kuwait, CNN reported.
Their primary responsibility will be security at Kabul International Airport — the only way out for Americans and Afghans fleeing the country which is currently in a state of chaos, the outlet said.
Biden has blamed the mayhem unfolding in Afghanistan on former President Trump’s efforts to end the war, which Biden said created a blueprint that put US forces in a difficult spot with an emboldened Taliban challenging the Afghan government.
“When I came to office, I inherited a deal cut by my predecessor — which he invited the Taliban to discuss at Camp David on the eve of 9/11 of 2019 — that left the Taliban in the strongest position militarily since 2001,” he said in a statement Saturday.
“I was the fourth president to preside over an American troop presence in Afghanistan — two Republicans, two Democrats. I would not, and will not, pass this war onto a fifth.”