Ireland is working to evacuate 36 of its citizens, including dependents and dual nationals, from Afghanistan amid the Taliban takeover, the Irish foreign affairs minister said.
Irish Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney told Irish broadcaster RTE that a “small number” of Irish citizens, most of which work for international or non-governmental organizations, are waiting at the Kabul international airport for evacuation.
Coveney said that the earlier figure of 25 adults and eight dependents awaiting evacuation has risen slightly to 36.
Coveney added that three people have already been successfully evacuated from the war-torn country.
According to Coveney, getting people to the airport was “very difficult.”
“It is difficult for some to get to Kabul from where they are as there are checks run by Taliban,” Coveney said.
“Certainly the easiest way, in our view, to get Irish citizens out is to work in partnership with other countries who are trying to do the same for their own citizens,” Coveney further said.
Ireland is working with the European Union, the United Kingdom, and the Unite States “to make sure there are flights leaving Kabul” for Irish citizens, according to Coveney.
Coveney also said that sending Irish military personnel to Kabul would “complicate rather than simplify things,” noting that there was already a military presence in the airport.
About 4,500 U.S. troops temporarily control the Kabul airport for the evacuation efforts.
Coveney also said that he hopes Ireland will be able to accept more Afghans. The current figure stands at 150 as part of the refugee resettlement plan.
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