WORLD NEWS – The Ministry of Defense has assured that the special operations team of the Armed Forces displaced to the Kabul airport is already working to get out of the airfield and be able to rescue Afghans who seek refuge in our country.
Margarita Robles, Minister of Defense, and the Chief of the Defense Staff (JEMAD), Admiral Teodoro López Calderón, visited the Special Operations Command yesterday afternoon. This was at the Retamares base, in the Madrid municipality of Pozuelo de Alarcón. The Afghan refugee evacuation operation is coordinated and managed from this base.
The violence is great
In statements to the media, Robles said that “in the last hours there is an option that is underway. Work is being done” to go outside the airport and be able to rescue Afghan citizens. But that “for security reasons” I cannot say anything more because “Taliban violence is very great.”
Robles warned of the deterioration of the situation in Kabul: “We will evacuate while we can. It is being done. We are trying to rescue Afghans as quickly as possible.”
The Defense Minister confirmed the Spanish Government will continue to try and remove the largest number of collaborators from the country. But warned – the bailouts of Spain will continue as long as the US is there.
Neither Robles nor JEMAD has given more details regarding the operation. Nor have they said whether the Taliban have been asked for authorisation to go outside.
But they did want to make clear the situation in the vicinity of the airfield is worsening. “It is becoming much more difficult to approach the airport because the Taliban have already begun to exercise violence. There are more and more blows and more beatings to people who are trying to approach the airport. Even passing the ‘checkpoints’ is being a nightmare and a human drama”, explained Robles.
The deadline is close
Robles said “it is impossible” to know how many people will be able to withdraw. So far, there are more than a thousand people. However, she acknowledged that “the August 31 deadline is close”.
Currently, the US is standing firm and has said they still plan to pull out prior to the August 31 deadline that the Taliban gave.
As many as we can
“We are going to wait to see what decision the Americans make,” Robles said, but “while we can, as many as we can.”