The US troops continue the process, even though there could be more bloodshed. The next few days "will be our most dangerous period," declared the White House press secretary.
The US armed forces, now under heightened security and threat of another terrorist attack, went ahead with the evacuation from Kabul airport on Friday, The day after the suicide bombing at the doors of the air terminal, he wrote a devastating final chapter for the nearly 20-year war in Afghanistan.
The death toll has risen to 13 US military personnel and 169 Afghans, a figure that could rise after officials examine the remains.
The White House and the Pentagon warned there could be more bloodshed before Tuesday, the deadline imposed by President Joe Biden to end the airlift and withdraw US forces.
The next few days will be the most dangerous time for us to evacuate," said Jen Psaki, White House press secretary.
Thursday's attack - attributed to the Afghan branch of the Islamic State group, an enemy of both the Taliban and the West - was one of the deadliest terrorist attacks the country has seen. The United States said it was the deadliest day for US forces in Afghanistan since 2011.
As the call to prayer resounded in Kabul on Friday, with the roar of departing planes, the impatient crowds arriving at the airport in hopes of escaping Taliban rule were more visible than ever, despite the bloody scenes. Seen it the day before.
Afghans, US citizens, and other foreigners alike knew that time was running out to get out via the airlift.
Jamshad went to the airport with his wife and three young children. He firmly held an invitation to a western country that he did not want to identify.
"After the explosion, I decided I would give it a try. Because I'm afraid that now there will be more attacks, and I think now I have to go," said Jamshad, who only uses one name like many Afghans.
The Pentagon said Friday that there was only one suicide bomber at the airport gate, and not two, as U.S. officials initially reported. A US official pointed out that the attacker was carrying a larger-than-usual explosive charge, about 12 kilos, loaded with shrapnel, which would explain the high number of victims.
The U.S. official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media. Officials who gave the Afghan death toll were not authorized to talk to the media and spoke anonymously.
Among the Afghan victims were the founder of a news agency and several poor Afghans. They came to the airport hoping for a better life.
Details of Americans who died before the Pentagon's name was released - 11 Marines, a Navy SEAL and an Army soldier. Among them was a young Wyoming Marine whose wife is expecting a child from him.
British officials said two British nationals and the son of another Briton were also among the dead when the bomb exploded in the crowd.
In the morning after the attack, the Taliban used a pickup truck full of fighters and three captured Humvees to set up barricades 500 meters from the airport, where the US troops were present, to keep the crowd away before the gates.
US military officials said some doors were closed and other security measures were in place. He clarified that there are strict restrictions on Taliban checkpoints and there are few people around the gates. The military said it had also asked the Taliban to close some roads due to the possibility of suicide bombers in vehicles.
The Pentagon noted that the airport already had defenses against rocket attacks. It said the United States would maintain human-crewed and uncrewed flights over the airport for surveillance and protection, including the use of ground attack aircraft with heavy AC- weapons. 130.
US officials said evacuees with proper credentials were still allowed to go through the gates. But, inside, some 5,400 people were waiting for evacuation flights.
In Washington, US commanders briefed Biden on developing plans to counter the Islamic State and fulfill the president's promise to hunt down the attackers and "make them pay."
Biden announced that the US effort to remove Americans, Afghan allies, and others at risk than the Taliban is a worthwhile mission.
The UN Security Council described the attack as "particularly disgusting" to civilians fleeing and those seeking their help.
The Taliban have regained control of Afghanistan two decades after the September 11, 2001, US-led invasion. His return to power has frightened many Afghans, who fled the country before the US withdrawal.
More than 100,000 people have been safely evacuated through the Kabul airport, according to the United States. Still, thousands more are struggling to get out on one of the most significant air transfers in history.
The White House said Friday morning that 8,500 evacuees had flown aboard US military jets in the previous 24 hours, along with about 4,000 people on coalition flights. It is the exact total as the day before the attack.
But the chances of helping those hoping to join the evacuation are fading fast. More European allies and other countries would wind up their airlift operations on Friday, in part to give the United States time to shut down its operations.
The Taliban have said they will allow Afghans to leave commercially after the United States completes its withdrawal. Still, it is unclear which airlines would travel to an airport controlled by them.