Hundreds of Afghans stumble upon a US military cargo plane to escape from Kabul: a historical film. The most glamorous photo of the Taliban capturing Afghanistan was recorded on Sunday (8/15) and spread on news sites and social media the next day.
Faces look at the camera – their expressions are a mixture of anxiety and fatigue. They are mostly men, but there are also some women and children – even a baby with a bottle. They are usually inside an airplane carrying troops and cargo from around the world.
The image was originally taken by the U.S. Defense Analysis website Defense One, but was released Tuesday (8/17) by the U.S. Air Mobility Command’s public relations office.
On Sunday (8/15), a security official quoted a U.S. official as saying the public had boarded the plane’s half-open loading ramp in panic. The team decided it was better to take off than to take Afghanistan out of the plane. According to the official, there were about 640 Afghan civilians on board. The plane flew from Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, to a U.S. base in Qatar, where they landed safely.
The C-17 Globemaster has the highest number of passengers ever recorded on this type of aircraft.
The Israeli Boeing 747, which carried more than 1,000 Jewish immigrants from Ethiopia in 1991, is close to the record for most people ever boarded.
It was one of several planes that were able to evacuate hundreds of Afghans from Kabul – yet most of those who tried to leave were unsuccessful.
In recent days, thousands of Afghans have rushed to the airport and tried to flee. Commercial airspace has been closed for a while, and foreign troops have struggled to keep Kabul airport afloat amid chaos.
Travelers said there were rumors that foreigners and some Afghans were abandoning ties with foreign governments and organizations, but that even those without visas would be allowed to travel.
The video, taken by the Afghan media, showed hundreds of Afghans running with the same moving plane, with some sticking to the side, indicating the utter despair of the Afghans at the time. Another video shows the men falling down from the departing plane.
In fact, shortly after takeoff, three people were said to have fallen from the base of the plane to which they were clinging and died. In addition, the U.S. military says soldiers shot dead two gunmen.
As large crowds arrived, U.S. forces fired into the air and tried to force people into planes.
Then on Monday (8/16), a Pentagon spokesman said all flights had been grounded as a “precaution”. The airport reopened at midnight the same day.
While air travel could carry some, the numbers could be a drop in the ocean for those forced to flee in fear of the Taliban.
The UN refugee agency, UNHCR, estimates that 550,000 Afghans have been internally displaced since the beginning of this year.
It is believed to cross the border between 20,000 and 30,000 every week, UNHCR Representative in Afghanistan Carolyn Van Brain told CNN. Government figures put the number at 120,000 in Kabul when Taliban forces approached.
Many of those who feared for their lives worked with US-led forces, often translators or contractors. Another major impetus was the treatment of women and the use of barbaric punishments during the Taliban’s previous regime in the 1990s.
The United States and other countries are rushing to remove officials and allies from the country.
In early August, the White House announced plans to allow thousands of Afghans with US ties to settle there. On Monday, President Joe Biden announced $ 500 million (R $ 2.6 billion) in aid to refugees in Afghanistan.
The United States has relocated about 2,000 Afghans under a special immigrant visa program, and plans to repatriate thousands, officials say.
Other countries are helping as well. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said the country may have to evacuate about 10,000 people, including 2,500 pro-government workers.
UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Robb told the BBC on Sunday that 150 British civilians had been flown in and that another 350 British and Afghan civilians working with British troops would be deported “in the coming days”.
Last week, the UK already separated 289 Afghans.
England are set to send another 200 players to Kabul. About 900 UK soldiers will patrol the airport after the chaotic scenes as part of efforts to secure the departing planes.
According to Robin, the UK is considering how many refugees Afghanistan will receive. More than 3,000 Afghan translators, staff and their families have already agreed to immigrate to the country.
The unrest in Afghanistan has heightened fears about the arrival of new immigrants to Europe. A clear example is Turkey’s decision to increase security with its long border with Iran, where Turkey builds a concrete wall.
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