The French Prime Minister has announced that he will suspend evacuation activities at Kabul Airport on Friday night.
“We will not be able to evacuate people from Kabul Airport after tomorrow evening,” French Prime Minister Jean Castex told RTL Radio Thursday.
The Dutch government said it plans to carry out its final evacuation flight from Afghanistan on Thursday.
The United States and its allies have urged citizens and visa holders to leave the airport because of the threat of terrorist attacks by ISIS terrorist groups.
British military minister James Heappey said Thursday morning that there was a “very reliable” threat of a “very deadly” terrorist attack on Kabul Airport within hours.
The threat is believed to be from ISIS-K, or Khorasan, an Islamic State, an ISIS affiliate in Afghanistan, consisting of disgruntled Taliban members with an even more extreme view of Islam. ..
The group is said to be the Taliban’s enemy, but it is possible that the Taliban’s release of prisoners across the country boosted its rank.
“The Netherlands has been notified by the United States that it needs to leave today and is likely to make its last flight later today,” the Dutch government said in a letter to Parliament.
“This is a painful moment, as this means that people who are eligible to evacuate to the Netherlands will be left behind despite all the great efforts of the past.”
The Dutch government has been unable to assist evacuees in and around the airport due to security conditions and said, “We strongly recommend that you do not come to the airport.”
Denmark’s last evacuation flight has already departed. “It’s no longer safe to get in and out of Kabul,” said Defense Minister Trine Bramsen.
Poland and Belgium finished their evacuation on Wednesday. “We can no longer endanger the lives of diplomats and soldiers,” said Marcin Przydacz, Deputy Foreign Minister of Poland.
The Czech Republic last week declared its own evacuation mission completed.
Heapey said Britain had 11 more flights scheduled from Kabul on Thursday, but did not say whether it would end the operation because of the safety of ground troops.
Heapey has recorded a total of 1,988 people taking off from Kabul in eight Royal Air Force flights within the last 24 hours, since the Taliban began empowering 12,279 people.
Reuters, Associated Press and PA contributed to this report.