Dutch Foreign Minister Sigrid Kaag explained that the US military, which is responsible for securing the airport, allowed the plane to wait only 30 minutes and then ordered it to take off, even though there were no Dutch nationals on board.
Of the approximately forty people who managed to board, according to the minister, none of them were of Afghan nationality. “Lots of people were waiting at the airport entrance with their families. It was horrible,” Kag was quoted by the ANP news agency as saying.
The agency stated that Kaag is coordinating the evacuation with the Americans to avoid this type of situation, which his German counterpart Heiko Maas also did today.
A Dutch citizen of Afghan origin told NOS public television that he was unable to reach the departure gate “which is being protected by the Americans”. “I showed them my passport and said it was Dutch, but it was very annoying, and I didn’t really hear what the American said,” he explained.
He declared, “After I repeated three more times that I was Dutch, they told me to stay away, or else they would shoot. I decided to leave. I didn’t want to risk being shot.”
“We want the Americans to give us more time,” Kag wondered, citing NOS, announcing later, via the social network Twitter, that it was keeping work “at the European level, for better coordination.”
The Netherlands evacuated its first citizens on Wednesday. A plane has taken off from Kabul with about 35 Dutch nationals, as well as Belgians, Germans and Britons, towards Tbilisi (Georgia), the defense minister announced on Twitter.
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