Tuesday Apr 27, 2021
WASHINGTON: Owing to an increasing number of threats, the United States on Tuesday directed non-essential staff to exit its Kabul embassy as Washington prepares to end its 20-year war in the country.
The State Department in a travel advisory said it had "ordered the departure from US embassy Kabul of US government employees whose functions can be performed elsewhere."
Earlier this month, US President Joe Biden had announced the unconditional withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, naming September 11 as the deadline by which the last soldiers will have finally departed. The pullout will begin on May 1.
The Pentagon has around 2,500 troops in Afghanistan, down from a high of more than 100,000. Thousands more serve as part of a 9,600-strong NATO force, which will also withdraw at the same time.