Afghanistan: seven dead in a new day of violence at Kabul airport

In a new day of chaos and violence around the Kabul airport, seven Afghan citizens died trying to escape the country and the Taliban. Since taking the capital of Afghanistan last Sunday, the fundamentalist militia left Hamid Karzai airport in the hands of the United States, which it now accuses of having “failed to impose order.” The streets leading to the airfield are controlled by the Taliban, who fire into the air and beat people with sticks and whips to try to stop the crowd.. Meanwhile, numerous families wait huddled between the barbed wires that separate the insurgents from the US troops.

From Washington the president Joe Biden continues to defend the military withdrawal from Afghanistan and does not intend to move a comma from the original evacuation scheme, while the European Union (EU) considers it “impossible” to evacuate everyone between now and the August 31 deadline. For that reason the British Ministry of Defense promotes a extension of the withdrawal of US troops. To “ensure safe evacuations and prevent a humanitarian crisis” G7 leaders will hold a virtual meeting on Tuesdayannounced British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who currently chairs the group.

“Dehydrated and terrified”

“Our condolences to the families of the seven Afghans who unfortunately died in the crowd in Kabul,” said Sunday UK Ministry of Defense it’s a statement. “Conditions at the site are extremely difficult, but we do everything we can to manage the situation as safely as possible.”added the portfolio. The government of Boris Johnson was in charge of confirming the death toll in the Afghan capital.

Britain’s Sky News channel had broadcast images of at least three bodies covered in white canvas outside the airport on Saturday, and its reporter on the ground, Stuart Ramsay, said people were being crushed while others lay “dehydrated and terrified.” They were the last images of the desperation that is lived in the Afghan territory after the broadcast of the video of a baby delivered to a soldier on a wall at the airport and the Horror scenes of people hanging from planes during takeoff. But this Sunday he joined the dramatic series of events an Afghan woman who gave birth on a US Air Force plane He was heading to the Ramstein base in Germany.

Although the Taliban movement strives to promise a gentler version of its brutal 1996-2001 regime, thousands of terrified Afghans continue to try to flee the country through the airport.. A journalist who was evacuated this Sunday explained to the AFP agency how the desperate crowds surrounded the bus in which he was transported by Kabul. “They would show us their passports and yell at us: ‘Take us with you, please!'”explained the press worker, who added: “A Taliban fighter in a truck fired into the air to disperse them.”

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Extend the time for evacuation

Faced with the crisis in the vicinity of the airport, the British government requested an extension of the deadline for the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan what is stipulated for next August 31. UK Defense Minister Ben Wallace told the newspaper Mail on Sunday that “No nation will be able to evacuate the whole world” from Afghanistan before the withdrawal of the United States Army.

The head of foreign policy of the European Union, Josep Borrell, also got into the discussion with the Pentagon by warning: “They want to evacuate 60 thousand people by the end of the month. It is mathematically impossible.”. President Joe Biden said this Sunday that 33,000 people had been evacuated since the beginning of operations on August 14. What’s more 18 civil aircraft from American Airlines, Atlas, Delta, Omni, Hawaiian and United to assist dozens of military cargo ships who participate in the operation.

Among those already evacuated is an Afghan woman who gave birth on a plane when she was about to land at a military base in Germany. The mother and child are in good condition, the US Air Force said. The woman was flying Saturday from a Pentagon base in the Middle East to the US military base in Ramstein, Germany, when she began to feel contractions and “complications.” The commander of the ship “decided to descend in altitude to increase the pressure inside the plane, which allowed to save the life of the mother”added the Air Mobility Command, one of the main commands of the US air force.

UNICEF and WHO humanitarian aid

In the midst of an increasingly disturbing scenario in the region, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Health Organization (WHO) requested this Sunday an airlift to Kabul to “deliver medicines and other supplies that save lives.” Although in recent days the focus was on large air operations to evacuate people, Afghanistan already “represented the third largest humanitarian operation in the world with more than 18 million people in need of help” prior to the Taliban conquest last Sunday.

“As humanitarian needs increase in Afghanistan, the capacity to respond to those needs is rapidly diminishing.”, the Unicef ​​regional director for South Asia lamented in a joint statement, George Laryea-Adjei, and the WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean, Ahmed al Mandhari.


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