The CIA reportedly carried out secretive evacuation missions in Afghanistan

·1 min read
CIA headquarters.
CIA headquarters. Olivier Doulier - Pool/Getty Images

Specifics remain guarded, but reports indicate the CIA contributed to the evacuation of American citizens who remained in Kabul after the Taliban takeover. The Washington Post details the escape of one Afghan-American woman, who was working on a USAID project, from the city.

Shaqaiq Birashk was contacted by a man claiming, honestly it turns out, to work for the U.S. government who set up transportation from her apartment. The "white-knuckle" drive was successful, and Birashk was taken to a CIA compound known as Eagle Base. From there she was transferred to Kabul's Hamid Karzai International Airport, and the Hungarian military subsequently flew her to Uzbekistan. After that she went on to Budapest before finally reuniting with her family in Colorado.

A spokeswoman for the CIA told the Post only that the agency supported the broader evacuation in "various ways," but five current and former U.S. officials familiar with the missions, which were separate from other aerial rescues conducted by the U.S. military, shed a little more light on how things unfolded. The CIA rescues reportedly relied in part on Afghan counterterrorism forces still in operation after the fall of the central government. The forces reportedly worked with U.S. troops to "help pluck people from the crowd at the airport" and pick people up at their homes or prearranged street corners. Read more at The Washington Post.

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