with videoA Defense C130 Hercules aircraft carrying Dutch nationals and deportees from other countries on board left Sudan at night from Sunday to Monday. About sixty Dutch people were evacuated from the country via this plane and other flights from international partners. Minister Wopke Hoekstra (Foreign Affairs) reported this on Twitter.
On Monday morning, the first Dutch evacuation flight from Sudan landed in Jordan, carrying 32 evacuees. There were 15 Dutch people on this flight. The State Department stated that the flight was not full. “At the time of departure, there were no more people who could be taken on this flight.”
The evacuation was carried out in Sudan by the Dutch Marines. In recent days, the possibilities of evacuating the Dutch have been explored, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. On Sunday, it became apparent that a time limit at the airport had become available. I informed the Dutch Ministry in Sudan of this and kept in close contact with them about transportation to the airport.
Evacuees from Sudan are received in Jordan by Consular Support Team (SCOT) staff. SCOT is a team of external affairs officers that can be quickly deployed to an area where many Dutch people need help. They will later be transferred to the Netherlands from Jordan. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Defense and Foreign Affairs continues to work to evacuate people who were not on the first flight out of Sudan, according to the State Department.
A number of Dutch people have already landed on a French plane in Djibouti, the East African country, on Sunday. They were taken care of there by two SCOT employees. A spokeswoman for foreign affairs could not say how many people participated in the night from Sunday to Monday. Two SCOT employees arrived in Djibouti on Saturday night and set up a reception area for evacuees there, among other things.
Minister Wopke Hoekstra (Foreign Affairs) announced on Sunday that the first group of Dutch people has been evacuated from Sudan. He also used a French plane and went to Jordan. According to Hoekstra, there will be a “handful” of Dutchmen on board. The spokeswoman could not say whether or not they have now arrived in Jordan on Sunday night and Monday.
Evacuations are not without risks. “The Dutch have to decide for themselves whether they want it and can benefit from it,” says Foreign Affairs. According to the ministry, it is “unexpected” how long it will be possible to evacuate people.
Some Dutch people in Sudan have told the Foreign Ministry that they cannot come to the airport because they do not have transportation. Others do not dare to go to the airport because of the poor security situation in the capital, Khartoum. A number of Dutch people do not want to leave their families behind.
Thousands of EU citizens have been evacuated
So far, more than a thousand citizens of European Union countries have been evacuated from Sudan. It was a “complicated but successful operation,” says Josep Borrell, the EU’s foreign affairs coordinator.
After Saudi Arabia, the US and the UK reported this weekend that they had begun rounding up civilians, evacuations from other countries are now underway. Spain says it completed the process and Denmark was able to transfer a group of fifteen people from Sudan. Sweden and Canada evacuated their diplomats and embassy staff. China says it has sent a task force to Sudan and that a “group of personnel” has been able to leave the country safely.
Fighting in Sudan entered its second week on Saturday. The army of the regular government, led by Major General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, is fighting the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces of General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo. In 2021, the two leaders seized power in a joint coup, but relations between the two men have broken down since then.
At least 400 people have been killed in the fighting, including 256 civilians, according to the Sudanese Doctors Syndicate. Thousands of people were injured.
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