The State Department issued a security alert early Thursday morning reminding Americans in Ukraine that the United States will not be helping citizens evacuate.
The announcement to “remain vigilant and take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness” echoes the Biden administration’s response to the chaos in Afghanistan when the Taliban took over last year.
“The U.S. government will not be able to evacuate U.S. citizens from Ukraine,” the warning read.
“Know the location of your closest shelter or protected space,” the department told Americans.
“In the event of mortar and/or rocket fire, follow the instructions from local authorities and seek shelter immediately,” it added. “If you feel that your current location is no longer safe, you should carefully assess the potential risks involved in moving to a different location.”
National radio host Todd Starnes slammed Biden for the announcement.
“State Dept. tells Americans in Ukraine that they are on their own,” Starnes tweeted. “Biden leaves everyone behind.”
The State Department said it has suspended consular operations in Lviv in western Ukraine amid “reports of Russian attacks on targets in a number of major Ukrainian cities, including Kyiv, Kharkiv, Odesa, Mariupol and others.”
The U.S. Embassy in Kyiv suspended operations earlier this month.