Stay Information from Afghanistan: Rockets Fired at Kabul Airport as US Approaches withdrawal deadline | World information

UK evacuation efforts from Afghanistan had to focus on people who were already at Kabul airport, which means many cases may not have been examined by MPs and others, a Foreign Office minister said.

James Cleverly did not deny that a large number of emails about Afghans who might be eligible to leave the country may still be unopened in official inboxes, the Observer revealed. There has been “a barrage of calls for help,” Cleverly said.

“We focused on the people who were at the airport, being handled and through whom we thought we could get out while we still had the safety of Kabul airport,” he told the BBC, although many people reported failed attempts were allowed to enter the airport despite having their UK passport and evacuation permit documents.

“We will of course continue to process applications from people who have contacted us and who are still trying to get out of Afghanistan,” said Cleverly.

He said it was “impossible to put a figure” on how many people are trapped in Afghanistan and eligible for British aid, although Whitehall sources have suggested that number is around 9,000.

While the “great, great mass” of British nationals have left Afghanistan, Cleverly added, the numbers are for individuals who may qualify under Arap, the formal program for Afghan nationals who assisted British forces, and others potential victims of the Taliban.

He said, “We will continue to work to get people who fall into these groups – mostly now, of course, into this third group – people who are at risk of reprisals, be they high-profile people … religious minorities” or others who may be serious Are subject to reprisals by the Taliban. “

Up to 5,000 emails to the Foreign Office describing urgent cases of Afghans trying to flee Kabul remained unread, including those from MPs and charities, the Observer reported on Sunday.

This was followed by complaints from MPs that they and voters who alerted officials to people in Afghanistan in need of British assistance had received no response.

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