U.S. officials in Kabul, Afghanistan’s capital, supplied the Taliban with a list of names of U.S. citizens, green card holders, and Afghan allies who were supposed to be permitted access into the outer perimeter of the airport, according to Politico.
Three U.S. and congressional officials provided information to the outlet about the move, which was meant to speed up the evacuation of individuals from Afghanistan. The Taliban swiftly swept control of the country, seizing control of Kabul on Aug. 15.
“Basically, they just put all those Afghans on a kill list,” a defense official said, according to the outlet. “It’s just appalling and shocking and makes you feel unclean.”
After the fall of Kabul, the joint U.S. military and diplomatic coordination team at the airport supplied the Taliban with the names of individuals the U.S. wanted to pull out, according to Politico, which noted that this list contained American citizens, Afghans who worked with America amid the war and sought special immigrant visas to the U.S., dual nationals, and lawful permanent residents.
“They had to do that because of the security situation the White House created by allowing the Taliban to control everything outside the airport,” a U.S. official said, according to the outlet.
After scads of visa applicants came to the airport, overwhelming America’s capacity to process people, the State Department altered course, requesting that the applicants not go to the airport and that they wait until being cleared for entry, according to Politico, which said from that point forward, the list supplied to the Taliban did not contain those Afghan names.
“As of Aug. 25, only U.S. passport and green card holders were being accepted as eligible for evacuation, the defense official said,” the outlet reported.
The situation in Kabul significantly worsened Thursday due to attacks that killed 12 U.S. service members. At least 15 other American service members were injured and the attacks also resulted in the deaths and injuries of Afghan civilians.
The suicide bombers were “assessed to have been ISIS fighters,” according to Commander of U.S. Central Command Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr., who also noted that the attack, which occurred near the Abbey Gate at the airport, was followed with ISIS gunmen shooting at civilians and military forces. The other bombing attack occurred in the vicinity of the Baron Hotel, according to McKenzie.