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NATO promises not to forget the Afghans who could not be evacuated

NATO promises not to forget the Afghans who could not be evacuated

On the night of Monday to Tuesday, the last US military plane took off from Kabul airport. The flight ends a hasty rescue operation to evacuate more than 123,000 people, mostly personnel from Allied countries and Afghans who worked alongside them. But the end of the American presence on Afghan soil does not mean the end of the evacuations, promised the Secretary General of NATO.

“Keeping the airport open is essential, both to allow humanitarian aid to the Afghan people and to ensure that we can continue to get people out, those who want to but couldn’t do so. part of the military evacuation, Jens Stoltenberg said. We are all committed to continuing to work hard to get them out. We will not forget them. “

“Political, diplomatic and economic” pressures

Jens Stoltenberg assured that the allies would maintain diplomatic pressure on the new masters of the country so that they allow the departure of Afghans who feel in danger. He congratulated Turkey, a member of NATO, which offered to play a role in securing the airport. The head of the Atlantic Alliance also thanked the organization’s 800 or so civilian staff for their help in managing the airlift.

“We will continue to work with NATO allies and other countries to help people leave. The Taliban have made it clear that they will allow departures, we will judge the Taliban on what they say, but also on what they do, ”he said. “And we will use our political, diplomatic and economic leverage to get people to leave.” This is important because the NATO allies have been there for so many years. “

“Learning lessons within NATO”

Looking ahead, Jens Stoltenberg stressed that the 30-member Alliance will carefully consider what went wrong in their mission to build a government and army in Afghanistan capable of countering the Taliban. .

“This is one of the tough questions we need to ask ourselves as we now go through a process of assessment and analysis to learn lessons within NATO,” he said. “Because we need to better understand, both what went wrong, but also to analyze our achievements in Afghanistan, especially in the fight against terrorism. “

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