Poland halts Afghan airlift over safety as US deadline looms

TEHRAN, Aug. 26 (MNA) – Poland ends its evacuations from Afghanistan, according to an official, making it one of the first Western countries to halt operations helping people flee the Taliban takeover as a full American withdrawal looms.

Marcin Przydacz, a Polish deputy foreign minister, said on Wednesday that a group taken from Kabul, and now in Uzbekistan, was the last group evacuated by Poland, Al-Jazeera reported.

US President Joe Biden declared the day before that he is sticking to his August 31 deadline for completing the US pullout, ramping up pressure on the already risky airlift from Kabul to get out as many people as possible in the coming days.

Deputy Foreign Minister Przydacz said his nation made its decision to not continue operations after consulting with the US and British officials.

“After a long analysis of reports on the security situation, we cannot risk the lives of our diplomats and of our soldiers any longer,” he said.

A number of troops will remain briefly to wrap up operations, Przydacz said. Poland has used more than a dozen planes to bring hundreds of evacuees to Warsaw. Some later travelled on to other countries.

ZZ/PR

News Code 177833

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