Germany’s first Afghan evacuation plane leaves with only 7 people despite Merkel’s plan to evacuate 10,000
Germany’s first plane in Kabul since the airport was flooded with desperate Afghans seeking a way out of the country failed to evacuate more than seven people. Berlin’s defense minister blamed chaos on the tarmac for the failure.
On Tuesday, Germany reported that only seven people had successfully been evacuated from Kabul on the A400M transport plane – the first German aircraft to arrive at the airport since the Taliban took control of the capital on Monday. Shortly after the militant group captured the city, thousands flooded the airport in a desperate bid to escape persecution. The overcrowded runway forced the German aircraft to undertake a “breakneck landing,” according to Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer.
“We have a very chaotic, dangerous and complex situation at the airport,” the minister told reporters. “We had very little time, so we only took on board people who were on site.”
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Only seven people made it onto the plane before it had to leave quickly, according to a Foreign Ministry spokesperson. The news comes a day after Chancellor Angela Merkel told her party colleagues that Germany plans to evacuate up to 10,000 people from Afghanistan, including lawyers and activists whose lives may be in danger due to the worsening conflict with the Taliban since the withdrawal of US and other Western nations’ troops.
Germany is waiting for US permission to fly a second aircraft in from Tashkent, which it is using as a hub, according to Reuters.
On Monday, Merkel praised the Afghanistan war for preventing Al-Qaeda from repeating its September 11, 2001 attacks on the US, but she also added that “everything else that has followed has not been as successful and has not been achieved in the way that we had planned.”
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The chancellor’s stated ambition to accept thousands of Afghan refugees caused mixed reactions from within the ruling Christian Democratic Union party (CDU). “For us, it is clear that 2015 must not be repeated,” said Paul Ziemiak, general secretary of the party.
“We won’t be able to solve the Afghanistan question through migration to Germany,” he added, referring to Merkel’s decision in 2015 to accept more than a million refugees mainly from Syria, which damaged the CDU’s popularity.
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Source:RT World News