“We are investigating whether we can provide resources and maybe people as well,” Kac said after a conversation with her Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu. “We want to do everything we can to support countries that are committed to safety and that want to make access to the airport possible again. With the aim of facilitating the evacuation of the Dutch and Afghans we want to bring to the Netherlands.”
She told the media that the minister also pledged one million euros in aid to open the airport. This money is intended for technical assistance and hiring staff to work at the airport. Turkey already has people at Kabul airport to investigate what is needed to get it running again.
Kaj is on a tour of the region around Afghanistan. It was previously in Qatar and Pakistan, two countries in close contact with the Taliban, the new rulers of Afghanistan. Both countries helped the Netherlands evacuate more than 2,500 people from Afghanistan before the airport was closed by order of the Taliban.
High priority evacuations
Resuming the eviction is a top priority for the Council of Ministers. Hundreds of people remained in Afghanistan wanting to come to the Netherlands. According to Kaj, between 15,000 and 16,000 Afghans have already reported to her ministry recently who want to come here. According to her, 1250 people still submit their reports every day.
In order to open the airport, agreements must be made with the Taliban. On Wednesday, the Netherlands spoke for the first time at the official level with the Taliban. It happened in Qatar. Kag says it is now being examined whether deals can be struck. This is necessary to be able to get people out of Afghanistan.
Kaag did not say how many people still had to be taken out of Afghanistan. Her ministry now has “a good view of the people we want to evacuate”.
Also listen to a new episode of the Defense and International Security podcast Delta Tango With Afghan warrior Lodi de Vos:
“Avid pop culture junkie. Alcohol nerd. Award-winning problem solver. Wannabe writer. Baconaholic. Typical creator.”