While the last of U.S. troops formally withdrew from Afghanistan on Monday, public concern for Americans still stranded has been mounting.
The State Department this week estimated the number of American nationals now at the possible mercy of the Taliban to be in the “low hundreds.”
Yet we learned this week that this figure could include schoolchildren.
A spokesperson for the San Juan Unified School District in California says that twenty-seven students from 19 local families are believed to still be in Afghanistan, where they had traveled to visit family members over the summer.
“These numbers continue to change rapidly. We believe that some of these families may be in transit out of Afghanistan, as we have not been able to reach many of them in the last few days,” she told The Epoch Times this week.
Meanwhile, three Cajon Valley Union School District students from the same family had visited relatives in the unstable nation over the summer and were “left behind in Afghanistan,” according a district spokesperson who emailed the outlet.
Officials from each district, which are in the Sacramento and San Diego areas, respectively, are working to locate their students and see they are able to return stateside safely.
As U.S. officials indicate recovery efforts may be underway to rescue Americans stranded in the Taliban, U.S. representatives have been working with the California school districts to aid the students’ safe return home.
“Our office has been in contact with the San Juan Unified School District, and [has] urgently flagged the students’ information with the Department of Defense and Department of State. We are pushing the DoD and State for an update,” a spokesperson for Rep. Ami Bera (D-CA) told The Epoch Times.
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) also previously assisted with the return of dozens of students and parents from the district who had been stuck in Afghanistan last week.
Now there is just the one family that remains.
“We are exploring strategies to rescue and bring them home,” a district spokesperson said.
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