World: Western nations quickly completed the evacuation of thousands of people from Afghanistan on Wednesday, as the August 31 deadline for the withdrawal of foreign forces approached without the country’s new Taliban rulers possibly allowing an extension.
In one of the largest such lifts ever, the United States and its allies have evacuated more than 70,000 people, including their civilians, NATO personnel and Afghans in danger, since August 14, the day before the Taliban dragged the capital Kabul to to bring an end to a foreign military present in the country since 20-years.
United States President Joe Biden said US troops in Afghanistan were facing an increasing danger and warned aid agencies of an impending humanitarian crisis for the backward population.
Biden said they were in a hurry to meet the deadline, following an agreement reached with the Islamic organisation last year to end America’s most lasting war.
“The sooner we can conclude, the better,” Biden stated Tuesday. “Every operational day poses an extra risk to our troops.”
Speaking on the condition of anonymity, two US officials said there was growing concern about the risk of Islamic State suicide bombings at the airport.
British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the deadline to evacuate people was until the last minute of the month.
Tens of thousands of Afghans cowering persecution have raided Kabul airport since the Taliban took over, and the lucky ones have secured seats on flights.
Many people gathered outside the airport – where soldiers from the United States, Britain and other nations tried to maintain order in the midst of dust and heat – hoping to get out.
They carried suitcases and suitcases with belongings, waving documents to soldiers in hopes of gaining access. One man, standing knee-deep in a flooded ditch, handed a child over there to the man.
“I heard from an e-mail from London that the Americans were taking people out, so I came so I could go abroad,” said a man, Aizaz Ullah.
While the focus now is on those trying to flee, the risk of starvation, disease and persecution is increasing for the rest of the population, aid agencies say.
“There is a perfect storm coming after several years of drought, conflict, economic decline, exacerbated by COVID,” David Beasley, executive director of the UN World Food Program, calling on the international community done to donate $ 200 million to food aid.
‘The number of people marching after famine has risen to 14 million.
The EU said this week it intends to quadruple aid and is seeking coordination with the United Nations on delivery as well as on-site security guarantees.
The UN chief of human rights said he had received credible reports of serious transgressions by the Taliban, including “summary executions” of noncombatants and Afghan security forces who had capitulated. The Taliban said they would investigate reports of atrocities.
The Taliban regime of 1996-2001 was marked by strict sharia law, with many political rights and basic freedoms curtailed and women severely oppressed. Afghanistan has also been a hub for anti-Western militants, and Washington, London and others fear it could become so again.
A NATO nation diplomat in Kabul, who refused to be identified, said several foreign aid groups were desperate to get Afghan staff out and neighboring countries had to open their land borders so more people could leave.
“Iran, Pakistan and Tajikistan need to evacuate many more people using air or land routes. It is essential to use air and land routes at a very fast pace,” the diplomat told.
The Taliban said all foreign evacuations should be completed by August 31 and called on the United States to stop urging talented Afghans to leave. They also tried to persuade people at the airport to return home, saying that they have nothing to fear.
“Foreign troops must withdraw by the deadline. This will pave the way for the resumption of civilian flights,” Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen said on Twitter.
“People with legal documents can travel through commercial flights after August 31.”
The Dutch government has said, according to some other governments, that it is almost certain that many people who are eligible for asylum will not be taken away in time.
Dutch troops have managed to get more than 100 people to Kabul airport, Foreign Minister Sigrid Kaag said, but hundreds more were at risk of being left behind.
The US-backed government collapsed when the United States and its allies withdrew troops two decades after expelling the Taliban in the weeks following the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States by Al Qaeda, whose leaders found a safe haven in the Taliban -regulated Afghanistan.