Data Points

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August 20, 2021 9:53 a.m.

A NATO official tells Reuters that 18,000 people have been evacuated from Kabul since the Taliban took over the city on Sunday. Yesterday Axios reported that the US has aircraft capacity to airlift 5,000-9,000 people out of the country per day, that 7,000 had been flown out since Sunday and that 2,000 of that number had been in the previous 24 hours.

Also yesterday, State Department spokesman Ned Price said that about 6,000 people had arrived in the Kabul airport and been processed for evacuation but were waiting in a queue for flights. I don’t think it was clear the mix of US nationals, asylum seekers and Afghan nationals who are part of the programs designated specifically for people who worked for the US in Afghanistan.

These numbers don’t perfectly line up. But note that the larger number from the NATO official I believe includes flights chartered by other countries and organizations. And the Reuters report is a bit more recent. Still, both sets of numbers give a broad sense of the scale of the on-going evacuation.

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