Rep. Darrell Issa said Friday an elderly American couple from San Diego County has departed Afghanistan and returned home to the region.
“After tireless hours of work and a perilous journey in one of the world’s most dangerous regions, another family from our community is finally home,” Issa, R-Bonsall, said in a statement.
The individuals are both older than 80 and have deep roots in the San Diego area according to Issa’s office. They attempted to flee Afghanistan for several weeks and were repeatedly thwarted by the Taliban, the office added.
Issa has consistently aided U.S. citizens trapped in Afghanistan following the Taliban takeover.
Two weeks ahead of the Aug. 31 deadline for troops to depart, Kabul fell to the Taliban as the Pentagon rushed to airlift Americans from the country. Issa has repeatedly criticized Biden’s response to the crisis.
The Cajon Valley School District, part of Issa’s congressional district, sought his aid when 24 students were stuck in Afghanistan. Other cries for help followed.
Issa credited House colleagues Rep. Markwayne Mullin, R-Okla., and Rep. Mike Waltz, R–Fla., for their support.
Waltz called on the State Department to work toward “a public-private partnership to ensure the hundreds of remaining Americans and their families get out as soon as possible.”
CNBC reported last month, though that Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that about 100 U.S. citizens continue to pursue evacuation from Afghanistan. It is unclear how many legal permanent residents also might be seeking aid.
The report also noted that the State Department had counted 85 citizens and 79 permanent residents who left Afghanistan following the troop withdrawal and airlifts.
In his Friday statement, Issa accused the department of not fulfilling “its obligations to the American citizens it left behind in Afghanistan.”
“While this is a day to celebrate, it is also a reminder than many more Americans and much more of our community remains in Afghanistan. We can’t quit until they are reunited with their loved ones.”