A crying Afghan woman has been filmed begging for help through a fence shouting “the Taliban is coming,” as US troops were swarmed by crowds of desperate people trying to flee Taliban rule, heartbreaking new videos show.
Videos circulating on social media have captured the chaotic scenes in Kabul as US troops continue to evacuate after the Taliban regained control of the war-torn country.
In one video, a young woman cried as she reached her hands through a fence covered in razor wire towards US troops on the other side.
Another shows hundreds of people holding up papers as they pushed towards troops.
The videos are believed to have been taken at Kabul’s Hamid Karzai airport where additional US troops were flown in to help secure the area and protect Americans still trying to evacuate after thousands of Afghans stormed onto the tarmac and tried to climb onboard US military planes.
The airport is the last place in Afghanistan being guarded by the US military after the Taliban overturned the Western-backed government on Sunday.
Since then, the US and its allies have been struggling to manage the chaotic withdrawal from the country.
The White House has said 13 flights on Tuesday airlifted 1,100 U.S. citizens, permanent residents and their families from the Kabul airport.
The pace is expected to pick up on Wednesday and through the rest of the week.
The Taliban have agreed to allow “safe passage” from Afghanistan for civilians struggling to join a U.S.-directed airlift from the capital, President Biden’s national security adviser Jake Sullivan said Tuesday.
But he acknowledged reports that some civilians were encountering resistance — “being turned away or pushed back or even beaten” — by the Taliban as they tried to reach the airport.
Hundreds of people were outside the airport early on Wednesday, with the Taliban demanding to see documents before allowing some inside.
Each time the gate opened dozens of people tried to push through and the Taliban fired occasional warning shots to disperse them.
Thousands of Afghans, many of whom helped US-led foreign forces over two decades, are desperate to leave following the Taliban takeover.
More than 2,200 diplomats and civilians have already been evacuated from Afghanistan on military flights, a Western security official told Reuters on Wednesday.
The official said those getting out included diplomatic staff, foreign security staff and Afghans who worked for embassies. He did not give a breakdown of how many Afghans were among the more than 2,200 people to leave.
It comes after chaos erupted at the airport on Monday when thousands stormed the tarmac as US military planes were taking off.
In one shocking video, masses of Afghans chased after a plane as it taxied down the runway, with some managing to cling on as it took off.
At least two people plunged to their deaths moments later as the plane rapidly gained altitude over the city.