US ready to help Australia evacuate citizens from Kabul

The Biden Administration said the United States will help Australia evacuate its citizens, former embassy guards and interpreters from Afghanistan.

National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told 9News at a White House briefing that the US took some responsibility for the chaotic scenes at Kabul airport as thousands of people attempted to flee the Taliban's seizure of power.

He said the Biden Administration was willing to work with Australia and other western countries to evacuate citizens and vulnerable Afghans facing persecution by the Taliban.

READ MORE: Taliban vow to honour women's rights but within Islamic law

"We do take some responsibility for our allies and partners in Afghanistan," Mr Sullivan said.

"We will be eager to work with Australia to help get out Australian citizens and other individuals who the Australians would like to see get out."

Kabul airport has reopened with nine US military evacuation flight arriving over the past few hours.

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There are 130 Australian citizens and more than 200 former embassy guards and interpreters in the country.

More than 250 Australian Defence Force troops are being sent to Afghanistan to help with evacuations but are stranded in Dubai until they can enter Kabul after the recent unrest at the airport.

Mr Sullivan said US officials had been in contact with the Taliban to ensure the safe passage of citizens to Kabul airport.

READ MORE: How Afghanistan disintegrated and what comes next

Kabul airport has reopened after thousands of people rushed the runways over the past two days, attempting to join the US Air Force evacuation flights.

But reports say Afghan residents travelling to airport face Taliban checkpoints along major roads.

On Tuesday, the Taliban entered the civilian half of the airport, firing into the air to drive out around 500 people there, said an Afghan official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorised to brief journalists.

EXPLAINER: Who are the Taliban and how did they take control of Afghanistan

The Taliban appeared to be trying to control the crowd rather than prevent people from leaving.

Mr Sullivan refused to say whether the Biden Administration will recognise the Taliban as the legitimate government of Afghanistan.

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