The American Humane Society has condemned the US government for apparently leaving a number of service animals behind after withdrawing from Kabul. Footage on social media showed the dogs in cages and roaming around the airport.

“I am devastated by reports that the American government is pulling out of Kabul and leaving behind brave US military contract working dogs to be tortured and killed at the hand of our enemies,” American Humane President and CEO Robert Ganzert said in a statement on Monday.

“These brave dogs do the same dangerous, lifesaving work as our military working dogs, and deserved a far better fate than the one to which they have been condemned,” Ganzert continued.

Images circulating on social media in recent days showed the dogs confined in cages at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul after their handlers had left the country. While the US military drew criticism for giving its own dogs seats on evacuation flights, those dogs are considered non-commissioned officers by the military, and outrank their handlers. The contract working dogs enjoy no such luxury.

Read More: Service dogs LEFT FOR DEAD in Kabul by departing US troops – reports

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