Erna Solberg: The Afghanistan evacuation effort is very difficult

Erna SolbergPhoto: Javad Parsa / NTB
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The first plane with evacuated Norwegians and other people from Afghanistan landed at Gardermoen on Friday. But many problems remain, Prime Minister Erna Solberg warned on Friday.

“I am glad that the first Norwegian plane with Norwegian citizens has landed. We are working intensively on the evacuation, which is very difficult,” Solberg (H) told NTB.

A total of 23 Norwegian citizens were on the plane that landed at Oslo airport at 8:30 AM, according to Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK). TV 2’s reporter Fredrik Græsvik and NRK’s ​​correspondent Yama Wolasmal were among them. In addition, some family members of locally employed Afghans and some other European citizens also landed.

But the chaos around Kabul International Airport is creating problems.

“It is difficult to get people to and from the airport. That is the biggest problem in the evacuation now,” Solberg said.

Confusing situation

The situation in Kabul is still very confusing, the Armed Forces’ spokesman, Brigadier Eystein Kvarving, told the media at the airport.

The Armed Forces assist the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the evacuation of Norwegian personnel and others from Afghanistan.

“This is not over. We will continue to assist the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” he said.

The evacuees will be followed up by psychologists and stress management teams, he stated.

Making a difference

At the same time, he believes Norway is still making a difference in Afghanistan.

“The field hospital we run is a prerequisite for Western forces to be able to be in Afghanistan right now.”

Norwegian authorities don’t know how many Norwegian citizens are currently left in Afghanistan. However, they encourage all Norwegian citizens in the country to register at reiseegistrering.no.

So far, 163 people have registered. But it is unclear how long it will take to evacuate everyone.

“It all depends on whether the airport can stay open. It has been closed for several periods of time. It also depends on how long the Americans will operate the airport’s military part,” Søreide told NRK.

Great uncertainty

There is also a lot of uncertainty about how the situation in Afghanistan will develop and whether the Taliban will prevent people who have cooperated with foreign authorities and forces from leaving the country.

According to Reuters, since the Taliban seized power in Kabul on Sunday, more than 18,000 people have been evacuated.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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