(USA Features) Sen. Tom Cotton on Sunday reached out to Americans stranded in Afghanistan amid that country’s collapse following President Joe Biden’s orders earlier this summer to withdraw, as Taliban forces closed in on the capital of Kabul.
A spokesperson from Cotton’s office told media outlets that several Americans trapped in the country have reached out for assistance after being unable to reach the safety of U.S. military perimeters and are currently trapped within Taliban-controlled zones in the capital city.
The Arkansas Republican announced Sunday his office will do “everything in our power” to help rescue Americans that are trapped behind Taliban checkpoints in Kabul.
“If you’re an American stranded in Afghanistan, or know one who is, please contact my office immediately,” Cotton wrote on Twitter, providing his office number and an email address.
“The situation is dire, but we’ll do everything in our power to help keep you informed and to help get you out,” he added.
“Cotton spokesman says that their office has heard from multiple US citizens in Kabul trapped behind Taliban checkpoints, who can’t safely reach the US perimeter and have no clear option for what to do,” tweeted New York Times columnist Maggie Haberman.
Cotton’s appeal comes as Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid announced that members of the group will “be on standby on all entrances of Kabul until a peaceful and satisfactory transfer of power is agreed.”
As the situation in Afghanistan became more dire late last week, with the Afghan military collapsing and Taliban fighters capturing one provincial capital and major city after another, Biden ordered 5,000 U.S. troops back into the collapsing country over the weekend, to assist with the evacuation of U.S. diplomatic personnel.
The situation has grown chaotic, with reports saying that several people have died at the international airport in Kabul scrambling to get on departing U.S. military flights and civilian air carriers to escape the Taliban.
Several reports noted that at least three Afghans died after they attempted to stow away aboard a U.S. military jet, falling from the skies to their deaths after being unable to hold onto the plane.
Biden, however, has not addressed the nation and is holed up at the presidential retreat of Camp David, in Maryland, where he is reportedly being briefed on the situation.
“With the United Nations Security Council and European ministers due to hold crisis meetings to address the rapid return of the Taliban, Biden and his officials kept a low profile amid mounting questions about their bungling departure from Afghanistan,” the Daily Mail reported Monday.
Also, White House press secretary Jen Psaki, strangely, has taken a week’s vacation as well, according to reports stating that emails sent to her account have come back with an autoreply indicating she’ll be out of the office until next week.
“They can expect to hear from the president soon. He’s right now actively engaged with his national security team,” National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told “Good Morning America” Monday regarding when Biden would address Americans.
“He is focused on ensuring the mission which is to secure that airport and continue these evacuations that that mission continues and brought to a positive conclusion. He’s deeply engaged on it,” he said, adding, “At the right point he will address the American people.”