Chaos and anxiety in Afghanistan as the radical Taliban have taken over the country at lightning speed. To the great discomfort of the locals and the international community. It led to great chaos during evacuation missions from the airport in Kabul, with two attacks claimed by IS, as a dramatic low. Follow the situation in Afghanistan through our live blog here.
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17.52 – Americans begin final phase retreat from Afghanistan
The Americans have embarked on the final phase of their retreat from Afghanistan, where they were military for almost twenty years in the fight against terror. US troops are gradually departing from the airport in the capital Kabul, reports the U.S. Department of Defense.
For safety reasons, the Pentagon does not mention numbers. An anonymous government official had said shortly before that the number of US soldiers at the airport has dropped below 4000. After the radical Alislamic Taliban took over power in Afghanistan two weeks ago, the number of troops increased to help evacuate Americans and others.
Previously, President Biden had announced its intention to end the US presence in Afghanistan on August 31 (next Tuesday). Only the airport is owned by the Americans. The evacuations are intended to continue as long as possible.
According to the latest figures from the Americans, nearly 112,000 foreigners and Afghans were able to get away from Kabul via the airlift since August 14. Most of the countries that helped with the giant operation stopped in recent days, the British Saturday. Since the end of July, in the weeks before the fall of Kabul, about 5500 people had been put to safety.
15.00 — Last British civil flight departed from Kabul
The last British aircraft to only evacuate civilians from the Afghan capital Kabul left Hamid Karzai International Airport on Saturday. What remains are only military flights with some civilians on board but especially soldiers, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Defense reported.
Britain has been able to evacuate nearly 15,000 people from the Taliban-occupied capital in two weeks. Yet the British have failed to get everyone who wanted to. On Friday, defense spoke of between 800 and 1100 Afghans who are allowed to come to Britain but are trapped in the Asian country. Also 100 to 150 British people had not been evacuated at that time.
“Its time to close this stage of surgery. But we are the people who have yet to remember and will do everything we can to help them.” said the British ambassador to Afghanistan at the tarmac of Kabul Airport.
06.34 — US drone hits target Afghan branch of IS
The United States claim to have killed in Afghanistan a target of IS-Khorasan, the Afghan branch of Islamic State Terror Group (IS), with a drone. The militant would have been involved in planning attacks.
The mission was carried out in the fight against terrorism, one day after a suicide terrorist blew himself up at Kabul Airport. The official death toll is 92, but according to various media, there may be 180 deaths. Among them are thirteen U.S. soldiers.
The Department of Defense does not report whether the target was directly involved in the airport massacre claimed by IS-K. An anonymous government source says this was not the case and tells that this person was suspected of planning future attacks. Target identity has not been disclosed.
The planner was in Nangarhar Province, east of Kabul and adjacent to Pakistan at the time of the drone attack. The militant was in a car, which also included another person with IS. Both were killed, the Americans say. There are no civilian casualties so far as known.
On Thursday, US President Joe Biden warned those responsible for the deadly attack in Kabul. “We will not forgive you, we will not forget you, we will make you pay,” he said in a White House speech. He also stated that he ordered an attack on IS-K
the group conducted several deadly attacks in Afghanistan in recent years. IS-K is made up of Muslim extremists who consider the Taliban, the countrys new powers, too moderate. See the two groupseach other as enemies.
02.49 — U.S. Embassy Kabul warns again: Avoid airport
Americans should avoid the international airport of Afghan capital Kabul. The U.S. embassy in town again warns of security risks on Friday, and people standing at the airport gates are called “to leave immediately.”
Thursday, an extremist blew himself up at one of the gates of Kabul Airport. As a result, some media, including The New York Times, killed some 180 people, including many Afghan civilians and at least 13 US soldiers.
Many Western countries, such as France, Spain, Great Britain, the Netherlands and Germany, have stopped evacuation missions in Afghanistan. It is unclear how the situation around the airport is currently going to be.
BBC correspondent Lyse Doucet, who is still in Kabul, reported on Friday based on a source that the remaining US and British forces are preparing to leave. According to the source, the Taliban could take over power at the airport “in the next few hours”, but this has not been confirmed by the U.S. Department of Defense, which stresses that the airport and airspace are still being controlled by the United States.
00.37 — France stops evacuation mission Kabul: More than 3,000 people rescued
France ended the evacuation mission in Afghanistan on Friday, the government reports. In total, more than 3000 evacuees were brought from Kabul to France, including more than 2600 Afghans. The mission has stopped because “security could no longer be ensured,” reports the French Foreign Minister.
French embassy staff have left the Afghan capital airport and have now arrived in the United Arab Emirates. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs says he talks with the Taliban to ensure that people who want to leave Afghanistan after August 31.
On Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron said France was trying to get “several hundred people” away from Afghanistan. Its not clear if that succeeded. Other countries, including Belgium, Canada, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain and Great Britain, have completed evacuation missions in Afghanistan before.
The United States still retrieve people from the country. The White House reported on Friday (local time) that around 4200 people were evacuated from Kabul in 12 hours. It is estimated that more than 100,000 people have fled through Kabul Airport, which is protected by a US force until August 31.