After the State Department warned that U.S. citizens may have to pay more than $ 2,000 for evacuation flights from Afghanistan over the weekend, reports are being asked to pay for those who want to flee. Was shown.
U.S. officials said Politico’s evacuation flights from Kabul would be free, National security daily Newsletter report Some sources have said differently, including those who said State Department staff were demanding up to $ 2,000 or more per US citizen from non-citizens.
But in a statement shared with the Washington Examiner Thursday, State Department spokesman Ned Price said, “In these unique circumstances, we are not seeking refunds from those fleeing Afghanistan.” ..
A security warning published on the website of the Overseas Security Advisory Board, which is part of the Bureau of Diplomatic Security of the State Department, was issued over the weekend on “repatriation assistance” for US citizens in Afghanistan.preliminary report Published on Saturday The day before the Taliban rushed to Kabul and Hamid Karzai International Airport became a chaotic scene of crowds desperately fleeing Kabul, U.S. citizens urged and sought commercial flights, leaving options. Provided guidance on eligibility requirements to those who are. Charter flights.
Some of the warnings state: “Return flights are not free. Passengers must sign a promissory note agreement and may not be eligible to renew their US passport until the loan is repaid. The cost may be more than US $ 2,000 per person. There are people. “
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another State Department web pageFocusing on crisis situations, also said that in general, such flights would not be free.
“In extreme situations, commercial transportation options (airplanes, trains, boats / ferries, etc.) are not available and the embassy or consulate has consular staff who, if conditions permit, can help US citizens seek. You can depart by working with the host government, other countries, and other US government agencies to identify and possibly arrange for available transportation, regardless of transportation or provider. , US citizens (and US government support) are generally responsible for reimbursing travel expenses to the government, “said Page.
US Embassy in Kabul People who were warned On Wednesday, the US government “cannot guarantee a safe passage” to the airport for evacuation.Breaking news Contains a message For all US citizens you need to fill out “Repatriation Support Request” Form..
The second page of the form tells each applicant that evacuation flights are not free and can cost more than $ 2,000 per person. Each US citizen is asked to fill out a checklist to show that they understand the terms or choose not to continue filling out the form.
“All passengers must refund the flight to the US Government. Promissory notes for the full cost of the flight (which can exceed $ 2000 per person) must be signed by each adult passenger prior to boarding. There is “.” “Cash or credit card payments are not accepted.”
The next question addresses loan repayment, stating that “US citizens who have signed a loan agreement for repatriation may not be eligible for a new passport until the loan is repaid.”
As of late Thursday night, the form is still accessible and posted on the US Embassy’s web page in Kabul. NS Daily caller report..Found by Washington Examiner Information page On Thursday, the State Department’s main website instructed people to fill out a form.
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Prior to Price’s statement, Politico reported that a State Department spokesperson did not deny that US citizens were being asked to pay for flights from Afghanistan.
“US law requires that evacuation assistance to US citizens or third-country citizens be provided” to the maximum extent practicable and on a refundable basis. ” The situation is very fluid and we are working to overcome any obstacles, “said the representative.
The report elicited anger from at least one member of Congress, Claudia Tenney, a Republican in New York.He asks President Joe Biden to resign and she Legislation To ensure that US citizens do not have to pay for evacuation flights from Afghanistan.
White House officials said Wednesday night that the United States, which had sent back thousands of troops to support its efforts at Kabul Airport, has evacuated about 6,000 people since Saturday. Price said there were 6,000 people on Thursday “Completely processed by our consulate team and will soon board the plane” at the airport in Kabul.
Biden I told ABC News on Wednesday US troops will remain in Afghanistan until all US citizens have been evacuated, even if that means keeping them there after the August 31 deadline for a complete withdrawal.
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tag: news, Afghanistan, State Department, International security
Original author: Daniel Chaitin, Jerry Dunleavy
Original location: Are US citizens required to pay $ 2,000 for evacuation flights from Kabul?