US will release a security advisory for its citizens in Kabul asking them to avoid travelling to the Kabul airport unless they receive instructions from the government. A fresh threat from Islamic State has forced the US to take this decision.
"Because of potential security threats outside the gates at the Kabul airport, we are advising US citizens to avoid traveling to the airport and to avoid airport gates at this time unless you receive individual instructions from a US government representative to do so," the US Embassy in Kabul said in a statement on Saturday.
On Friday, the US acknowledged the presence of al Qaeda in Afghanistan amid its large-scale evacuation from the war-torn country.
Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said that the presence of al Qaeda is not significant enough to merit a threat to our homeland as it used to be 20 years ago.
However, experts have raised concerns that Afghanistan might again become a breeding ground for terrorism with the Taliban taking control of the country.
"We know that al Qaeda has a presence as well as ISIS in Afghanistan and we've talked about that for quite some time," Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said during a press briefing.
"Since the end of July, we have relocated approximately 22,000 people. Since the beginning of this evacuation operation on August 14, we have evacuated approximately 17,000," Pentagon spokesperson Maj. Gen. Hank Taylor said during a briefing on Saturday.
"I would add that intelligence, law enforcement, and counter-terrorism professionals are conducting the screening and security vetting for all SIVs (Special Immigrant Visa) and other vulnerable Afghans before they are allowed to enter the United States," he added.
Since the Taliban takeover of the war-ravaged country, the US has also airlifted about 2,500 of its citizens from Afghanistan, the Pentagon spokesperson said.
The US has evacuated some 17,000 people from Afghanistan since August 14, Pentagon informed on Saturday.