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22 Aug 2021: US President Biden briefed on potential IS threat in Afghanistan
United States President Joe Biden was on Saturday briefed by his national security team on a potential Islamic State (IS) threat in Afghanistan, the White House said. The meeting, held at the White House Situation Room, discussed the evolving security situation and counter-terrorism operation, including against the Islamic State group in Afghanistan. The development comes a week after the Taliban took over Afghanistan.
Fact: Who attended the meeting?
Vice President Kamala Harris attended the meeting by secure teleconference from Singapore. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairperson Gen. Mark Milley, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, and National Intelligence Director Avril Haines, among others, were in attendance.
Details: Amid IS threat, evacuation plan discussed
Further, the meeting discussed evacuation plans and efforts to finalize agreements with third-party countries willing to serve as transit hubs for evacuees. The US has notably been forced to change its evacuation plan to avert the potential IS threat against Americans in Afghanistan. The US Embassy in Kabul also issued a fresh warning, asking Americans not to travel to Kabul airport without prior approval.
Threat: IS desires to target US and its interests abroad
The United States is reportedly concerned that the IS is reconstituting more largely after the Taliban gained control in Afghanistan. The IS has been present in Afghanistan for a while and takes America as its sole enemy. While the group suffered a major blow due to America's repeated air strikes, officials believe sections of the group are still active and can potentially target Americans.
Development: Taliban's framework for new government expected soon
Meanwhile, the Taliban is continuing discussions with Afghan politicians to form an "inclusive government" in the country that is acceptable to all. The framework for the creation of the new government is expected to be announced in the next few weeks, Reuters reported citing Taliban sources. Notably, former Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai and Abdullah Abdullah Saturday met with senior leaders of the Taliban.
Taliban takeover: Taliban advanced after US troops withdrawal
The Taliban took control of the Afghanistan government after the US withdrew its troops from the country with the aim to end America's two-decade-long 'War on Terror'. The Taliban advanced quickly, gaining control of several key cities and seizing the capital of Kabul by last Sunday. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the country the same day and civilians have also been rushing to scram.
The news article, US President Biden briefed on potential IS threat in Afghanistan appeared first on NewsBytes.
Also see: Afghanistan: Week after Kabul fell, anti-Taliban forces retake 3 districts
Afghanistan: IAF evacuates 168 from Kabul; flight reaches Delhi
US officials knew Afghanistan could fall to the Taliban
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