British soldiers talk about a desperate scene at Afghanistan airport when civilians try to escape

British soldiers involved in the evacuation of civilians from Afghanistan described a scene of turmoil when people desperately tried to flee the country.

Private Jake Howarth of the Second Battalion of the Yorkshire Regiment heard gunshots and remembered being surrounded by barbed wires when he landed at Kabul Airport to assist the British evacuation after the Taliban hijacking.

“No one knew what was going on because there was a lot of horror when we got there and it was obviously dark at night,” he said.

He added: “You have a barbed wire in the square, waiting for the people who live there to board the plane.

“You saw the soldiers moving around [and] Weapons and everything.

“It didn’t seem to be organized at all. As we walked, we could only hear constant gunshots at that time.

“Looking at people’s faces, we were all very shocked. I didn’t know what was going on. I don’t know if it was the Taliban or if the Allies fired their bullets. It was. “

Howarth said the scene made him feel “quite sad,” adding:

“There were children who were injured, scared, and didn’t know what was going on.

“When I grew up in a completely different country, I grew up differently, thinking about the children coming to this world, and it’s very sad to say that’s what they see first.”

Haworth added that the chief sergeant encouraged the soldiers to scold them to help them keep their jobs in mind. “

He was involved in a job called “Guardian Angel”. This meant taking care of those who had the right to leave and were being processed.

He recalled that it was important to keep people reassured against the backdrop of constant shootouts.

Captain David Kerett of the 2nd Battalion of the Yorkshire Regiment said the scene he saw after landing at Kabul Airport was “dramatically different” than when he was there last year.

He added that the “big thing” for soldiers on the ground is to show compassion.

He states: “It was difficult because there were obviously many risks and many upset people. For us, it was to get these people who gave them basic things like food and water. If you did that and reassured them that they were going to take off from the airport that night, they calmed down a lot.

“The friendly nature of the soldiers really helped.”

Operation Pitching in the United Kingdom rescued more than 15,000 people by the time the last plane departed the airport.

Helen William