Afghanistan: After UK, Spain warns that people will be left behind

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Amidst the rush to evacuate its citizens from war-torn Kabul, Spain has issued a warning saying that it will not be able to evacuate all Afghans who served in Spanish missions or worked with its government.

Speaking to a prominent Spanish radio network on Tuesday, Defence Minister Margarita Robles said that the country will evacuate as many people as possible but there are people who will left behind due to the “dramatic” situation on the ground.

Earlier in the day, her UK counterpart Ben Wallace issued a similar warning.

“Not everyone would be evacuated before the 31 August deadline agreed with the Taliban,” a report by the BBC quoted Wallace as saying.

“We have taken out 2,000 people in the last 24 hours and 10,000 since April,” Wallace said.

“Our focus is to get as many people out, but the scale of the challenge means that not everyone will get out. We are ruthlessly prioritising people,” he alerted.

Foreign forces are facing a looming August 31 deadline to get all troops out of Afghanistan, including the remaining US forces that are currently controlling Kabul airport.

The date was previously agreed in a deal with the Taliban, before the militant group gained near-complete control of the country.

Now, with an intense evacuation effort ongoing, the US is being pressed by allies to delay its withdrawal from the country.

The Taliban have warned of ‘consequences’ if foreign forces remain in the country after August 31.

–IANS

int/shs/bg