Dear Colleague to All Members on Travel to Afghanistan & Region
The entire Congress remains extremely concerned about conditions in Afghanistan. On a bipartisan basis, Members have expressed universal support for the swift and safe evacuation of U.S. citizens and Afghans at risk and have worked tirelessly to help ensure individuals at risk are evacuated.
Given the urgency of this situation, the desire of some Members to travel to Afghanistan and the surrounding areas is understandable and reflective of the high priority that we place on the lives of those on the ground. However, I write to reiterate that the Departments of Defense and State have requested that Members not travel to Afghanistan and the region during this time of danger. Ensuring the safe and timely evacuation of individuals at risk requires the full focus and attention of the U.S. military and diplomatic teams on the ground in Afghanistan. Member travel to the Afghanistan and the surrounding countries would unnecessarily divert needed resources from the priority mission of safely and expeditiously evacuating America and Afghans at risk from Afghanistan.
I have requested that the Executive Branch keep Members informed of developments in Afghanistan. In addition to today’s classified all-Member briefing, several calls have been held for Members and committee and personal staff. Throughout this week, various committees of jurisdiction will continue to hold Afghanistan briefings. Additional events are also being scheduled for committees and staff.
As we pray for the safety of Americans, our allies and our Afghan partners on the ground, the Congress continues to work with the Administration to advance stability and security in Afghanistan during this devastating time. We also pray for and are grateful to our men and women in uniform, diplomats and members of the intelligence community.
Updates will continue to be forthcoming.
Speaker of the House