Biden says would consider sanctions against Taliban, 'depending on conduct'

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US President Joe Biden (File Photo)
US President Joe Biden (File Photo)

Washington DC [US], August 23 (ANI): US President Joe Biden on Sunday refused to rule out possible sanctions against the Taliban after the group's takeover of Afghanistan last week.

Biden said, "it depends on the conduct" of the terrorist group which has given several assurances after forcefully replacing the democratically elected government in Kabul.

"The answer is yes. It depends on the conduct," Biden told reporters in Roosevelt Room when asked if he would support sanctions against Taliban under certain conditions.

Biden also informed that the US has extended the safe zone around the Kabul international airport and added that he is in discussions with US military officials about possibly extending the evacuation mission beyond the August 31 deadline.

"There are discussions going on among us and the military about extending, our hope is we will not have to extend," Biden said during a press conference at the White House.

Earlier on Sunday, US National Security Adviser (NSA) Jake Sullivan said that Washington will provide a prompt and "forceful" response to the Taliban in case the group hinders evacuation operations from the Kabul airport.

"If in the end Americans are blocked from getting to the airport, blocked from leaving the country or our operations are disrupted or our evacuations are in some way interfered with, we have explained to them (the Taliban) that there will be a swift and forceful response," NSA Sullivan told NBC News.

Terming the evacuation from Afghanistan the 'most difficult and largest airlift' ever in the history, Biden on Friday had assured to get all Americans and allies out of the war-torn country. "Kabul evacuation is among the largest and most difficult airlifts in history," Biden had said.

He added that it's time to end the Afghan mission and get all Americans out as Afghanistan has been taken over by the Taliban after the collapse of the government on Sunday.

US military has pulled around 25,100 individuals from Afghanistan since August 14, and approximately 30,000 since the end of July.

"There have been approximately 25,100 personnel (on both military and coalitions flights) evacuated since August 14. There have been approximately 30,000 personnel (on both military and coalition flights) evacuated since the end of July," the White House tweeted on Sunday. (ANI)

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