Friday 20 August 2021
The United States does not secure the airport for a long time
US signals NATO deadline to deploy in Kabul
The United States plunges Afghanistan into chaos with its withdrawal. The Allies are frantically trying to get their fellow citizens and aides out of the country. Their success in doing so, in turn, depends on Washington. From there, there are now signs that the job will soon be over.
According to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, the United States wants to finish the evacuation mission at Kabul airport in less than two weeks. After a video conference with foreign ministers of the alliance countries, the Norwegian said the United States had indicated that its schedule would end on August 31. At the same time, he confirmed that several allies had spoken in favor of the possibility of extending the mission during the talks. He said it was about getting more people out of the country.
It is unlikely that Kabul airport could continue to operate without the United States. The last time I was at the site with about 5,200 American soldiers securing the evacuation mission after the Taliban came to power.
“We are totally dependent on them (the US armed forces),” Dutch Foreign Minister Sigrid Kaag said. Some 700 Dutch nationals have yet to be evacuated quickly. Cage called for the need for the Americans to remain in Afghanistan after August 31 to ensure the evacuation.
US President Joe Biden assumes that between 50,000 and 65,000 people want to be brought to safety by the United States. It is likely that US forces will remain in Kabul after August 31 – this is not certain. It is also uncertain how the Taliban will act.
The German armed forces have transported 1,700 people
On the other hand, according to Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, the German army has so far transported 1,700 people to safety via an air bridge. It is the largest evacuation mission for the Bundeswehr to date. The US armed forces have moved 13,000 people abroad since Saturday, according to Biden.
Meanwhile, the German Army has flown two small helicopters to Kabul for use in rescuing German or local personnel. Inspector General Eberhard Zorn said they would be ready for action from Saturday. H-145M machines with a total of 13 soldiers were assigned to the Special Forces and requested by the American side. In urban areas, they need machines that are smaller than large helicopters. “We have them.”
According to Zorn, the helicopters will only be used in Kabul. There is no way to travel to Mazar-i-Sharif via the Hindu Kush to pick up someone. The German army was stationed in Mazar-i-Sharif. It is likely that former local employees who helped the German army were there. This has been activated so far only during the evacuation inside Kabul airport, which is secured by US forces. Countries like the United States and France are already using helicopters to bring people in need of protection to the airport.
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