GROUNDED: State Dept Blocks Private Rescue Flights Out of Afghanistan

Hundreds of people are still stranded in Afghanistan and the State Department is making it difficult for them to leave, according to leaked emails obtained by Fox News.

Eric Montavlo, who is organizing evacuation efforts for those left behind, shared the following correspondence from the State Department.

“No independent charters are allowed to land at [Al Udeid Air Base], the military airbase you mentioned in your communication with Samantha Power. In fact, no charters are allowed to land at an [sic] DoD base and most if not all countries in the Middle Eastern region, with the exception of perhaps Saudi Arabia will allow charters to land,” the official wrote to Montavlo on September 1st.

“You need to find another destination country, and it can’t be the U.S. either.”

Similar frustrations in dealing with the State Department were shared by U.S. Military veteran Chris Mills during an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo; he also assisted with evacuations.

“We finally had to get those families out of Kabul and into a different location, they were manifested on another aircraft, that aircraft had been approved by the Taliban, had been approved by the DOD, it had been approved by the State Department, and right before the [last] hour when it was ready to fly, the State Department went ahead and canceled that flight or disapproved … that flight because they wanted to vet the manifest, which I can understand and appreciate. But these are Americans who are basically being left behind,” Mills told Cuomo.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki and State Department spokesman Ned Price have denied the administration is preventing rescue flights from taking off.