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CLAIM ID

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The U.S. military left dozens of service dogs at Kabul airport in Afghanistan.

The Pentagon clarified that the dogs at Kabul airport belonged to a group called 'Kabul Small Animal Rescue.'

After the U.S. troops' withdrawal from Afghanistan on August 31, 2021, several rumors circulated on social media claiming that dozens of U.S. military service dogs were abandoned at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul. Some photographs also showed dogs locked in cages. However, the claim is false as they weren't U.S. military service dogs but belonged to a veterinary clinic and non-profit organization called 'Kabul Small Animal Rescue'.

On August 31, Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby tweeted, saying that "the U.S. Military did not leave any dogs in cages at Hamid Karzai International Airport, including the reported military working dogs. Photos circulating online were animals under the care of the Kabul Small Animal Rescue, not dogs under our care."

According to a report by Military.com, Kabul Small Animal Rescue was founded by Charlotte Maxwell-Jones in 2018. After the Taliban took over Afghanistan, the militants ordered Maxwell to leave the country. During her departure, she brought the dogs to the airport in kennels and asked the troops to get them on military evacuation flights. However, her request was denied because of customs prohibitions. The report added that the forces let the animals out and moved the dogs from the runway to a compound that the former Afghan army had used.

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) released a statement claiming that some of the dogs under the care of Kabul Small Animal Rescue were unable to gain passage on evacuating military aircraft and that most of the animals were left at the airport.

Though Kabul Small Animal Rescue has not yet released a statement on this matter, it is clear that the dogs didn't belong to the U.S. army. Therefore, the claim is false.

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