There are reports that U.S. citizens and Afghans from at-risk groups are stuck at the Mazar-I-Sharif airport in northern Afghanistan.
The White House said the Taliban “did not deserve” to be treated as a respected member of the international community.
At the same time, the United States accused the new rulers of Afghanistan of delaying flights with departing Americans and their Afghan allies.
“No one in the current administration – neither the president nor the members of the national security team – considers the Taliban a respected and significant member of the world community. They have done nothing to deserve this, and we have never given such an assessment,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said.
She added that the United States did not recognize the Taliban-led government in Afghanistan.
Simultaneously with the White House’s comment, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken called on the Taliban to allow charter flights to depart from Afghanistan.
It was reported that planes carrying Americans and vulnerable Afghans were detained at the Mazar-I-Sharif International Airport.
“At the moment, the Taliban does not allow charter flights to depart. They claim that some passengers do not have the necessary documents,” Blinken said at a press conference with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas at Ramstein Air Base in Germany.
“The bottom line is that these charter flights should be able to take off. And we will work every day so that they have such an opportunity,” the head of American diplomacy said.
Along with reports that U.S. citizens and at-risk Afghans are stuck at the Mazar-I-Sharif airport in northern Afghanistan, there are accusations that the State Department is not making sufficient efforts to facilitate their departure.
When asked how the United States can put pressure on the Taliban to do more, White House officials acknowledged the limitations of their capabilities.
“We do not participate in the fact that planes are not allowed to take off. We are not in place,” Psaki said at a briefing on Wednesday.
At the same time, she noted that there might be several Americans on board the planes, as well as hundreds of other people who have not been identified and verified. According to her, there is a “fundamental question” about where they will land.
“Are we really going to allow an airplane with hundreds of people to land on an American military base when we don’t know who they are and what security protocols were involved?” Psaki asked.
Blinken and Maas held talks with a group of partners and allies on Wednesday to discuss the situation in Afghanistan, including efforts to continue delivering humanitarian aid to the country after the Taliban seized power.
Blinken expressed concern about the lack of inclusiveness in the new Taliban government, saying that the interim administration should earn recognition and support.
“The nature of the Taliban – led government’s relationship with us and the international community will depend entirely on its actions in the coming weeks and months,” Blinken told reporters.