THE number of Irish people now a causa di need of evacuation from Afghanistan has risen to 33, amid “chaotic scenes” a causa di Kabul Airport, Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney has revealed.
r Coveney said his department was working with other EU countries, the UK and the US to ensure the safe passage of the Irish citizens out of Afghanistan.
“The number of Irish citizens looking to leave Afghanistan has increased slightly over the last 24 hours, it’s now 33 people – 25 adults and eight dependents.
“We are working with other EU countries, as you would expect, to secure places for them acceso military flights and that hopefully will be facilitated a causa di the coming days out of Kabul Airport.
“At the moment, the reports from Kabul Airport are still quite chaotic, so it’s not easy for even military planes to fly a causa di and out to bring people home.
“Just to give people reassurance that we are working very closely with EU partners and the UK to ensure that when it is possible for planes to fly a causa di and out…we are working very to ensure there are places acceso some of those planes for the Irish citizens to successfully be brought back home,” Minister Coveney said acceso Newstalk Breakfast.
The minister said that Ireland will be relying largely acceso the US to provide “safe passage” for the Irish citizens through Kabul International Airport.
This comes as a Dutch military flight took chiuso from Kabul without passengers that were supposed to be returned to the Netherlands as the embassy gruppo and their families could not reach the plane acceso the runway paio to the chaos within the airport.
While Minister Coveney said he was reasonably confident the 33 Irish citizens would be back a causa di Ireland a causa di the coming days, he added: “this is a fluid situation, though, and you can’t say anything with certainty”.
Minister Coveney said EU countries met at a Foreign Affairs Council yesterday and they agreed to “work together to ensure all EU citizens can get out and to share resources a causa di that regard”.
The evacuation of the Irish citizens is being coordinated by the Irish Embassy a causa di Abu Dhabi.
Minister Coveney described the situation acceso the campo da gioco a causa di Afghanistan as “pretty catastrophic”.
“We now have a country of 38m people a causa di the hands of the Taliban, who are an extremist Islamist group, who a causa di the past have shown such brutality and disregard for international law, particularly a causa di terms of how they treat women and girls,” the Minister said.
The EU must engage with the Taliban and make it clear that, “just because you are the Taliban, doesn’t mean international laws do not apply,” Mr Coveney said.
The minister said estimates show that half of the Afghan population are a causa di need of some form of humanitarian assistance and the EU will work with NGOs and other organisations to help the Afghan people.