The Taliban would block German government efforts to evacuate former Afghan workers and others at risk of persecution.
According to the news magazine The SpiegelBerlin’s contingency plan for thousands of former local employees of German institutions, political activists and artists in Afghanistan has stalled due to new controls imposed by the activists.
In a report released Sunday, Spiegel said the government’s goal was to evacuate 7,700 people between July and mid-September. But given that only 1,044 Afghans could be brought to Germany in July, that goal no longer seemed realistic, the report added.
The German foreign ministry told German news agency dpa that the pace of departures had slowed considerably. He said a “big problem” was that the Taliban only allowed citizens to leave the country with a passport, but hardly any passports were issued.
Spiegel reported that the Taliban were also stopping buses carrying evacuees across the border into neighboring Pakistan and forcing them to turn back. Under an agreement reached between Berlin and Pakistan in June, former Afghan employees of Germany are allowed to enter Pakistan, even without passports.
The Taliban took control of Afghanistan in August 2021 after the departure of US-led foreign forces. This triggered a chaotic international evacuation operation, with many people rushing to leave the country.
According to German government data, around 10,000 Afghans promised admission by Berlin are still waiting to leave the country. German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said in June that Germany had taken in around 21,000 people from Afghanistan who needed protection.
nm/aw (dpa, AFP, KNA)