The United States is sending another 1,000 troops to Afghanistan, raising the U.S. deployment to roughly 6,000. The increase comes as the Taliban has entered the capital of Kabul and Afghanistan’s president has fled the country.
Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani relinquished power to an interim government led by Taliban commander Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar.
“In order to avoid the bloodshed, I thought it was best to get out,” Ghani said in a statement.
Officials told Reuters and The Associated Press that President Ghani fled Afghanistan for Tajikistan and is expected to travel to a third country.
The Pentagon authorized 1,000 additional troops to Afghanistan to help with the evacuation, boosting the overall number to 6,000, US officials said.
The US Embassy in Kabul has suspended all operations and told Americans to shelter in place, saying it has received reports of gunfire at the international airport.