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German Minister of Foreign Affairs wants to bring 70,000 Afghans to the country

Berlin - Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas (SPD) has promised the local staff and other helpers who remained in Afghanistan that Germany would not let them down. The federal government will keep its promise of protection and bring up to 70,000 vulnerable Afghans to Germany, Maas said during a visit to Turkey, according to Der Spiegel.

The SPD politician has set out on a three-day trip to discuss how to proceed in the Afghanistan crisis. Talks in Qatar are also planned. The emirate has good contacts with the Taliban.

According to the report, the Afghans who, according to Maas, are still to be evacuated include not only former local staff but also journalists and people who have campaigned for human rights in the Hindu Kush.

Although the deployment of the Bundeswehr was over since the weekend, the rescue mission as a whole is not over yet. "We want to continue the relief operation," assured Maas. "But it is now entering a second phase."

Questionable implementation
The guaranteed aid applies to around 10,000 Afghans who have been in Germany's service in the past. In addition, there are 1,600 “activists and journalists who have to fear the revenge of the Taliban,” writes the magazine. "If you add the closest family to this, that would be around 70,000 people." Maas promised: "Our work will continue until everyone, for whom we are responsible in Afghanistan, is safe."

How this is to be achieved is still unclear, according to the report. The options are that civilian flight operations are resumed in the Afghan capital or that the local staff leave for Germany via neighboring countries such as Pakistan and Uzbekistan. However, both options have so far been considered unlikely or difficult. The airport is badly damaged and there are no suitable staff. The transit of local workers to neighboring countries would also be problematic because of the numerous Taliban posts that they would have to pass through.

Since the fall of Kabul, Maas has been faced with the accusation that he reacted too late and misjudged the situation. As a survey by the opinion research institute Insa on behalf of Junge Freiheit showed, 42% of Germans are therefore in favor of his resignation.

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