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Indonesia Airlifts Citizens and Others from Kabul


Indonesian and foreign citizens who were evacuated from Afghanistan had arrived in Indonesia through Halim Perdana Kusuma Air Base, Jakarta.

They landed at approximately 3am on an air force plane that was specially sent to Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan.

“They will immediately undergo health protocols according to the rules for arriving from abroad,” said Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi in a press statement.

In addition to the 26 Indonesian citizens, the Indonesian government also evacuated seven foreigners. That number consists of two Afghan nationals and five Filipino citizens.

One of the Afghan nationals is the husband of the Indonesian diplomatic staff. Meanwhile, the five Filipinos, are staff entrusted by the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte to be rescued.

“Bringing foreign nationals (in the evacuation process) is not a first for us. This is a humanitarian obligation,” added Retno Marsudi.

Retno went on to say that this evacuation process was carried out carefully and without any fuss. This was important, considering the situation in Afghanistan which is still fluid and constantly changing following the takeover by the Taliban on Monday.

The minister said that he was concerned that the smooth operation of the evacuation mission would have been threatened if the plan had been revealed, considering that a number of Taliban members were actively trying to prevent evacuations in Kabul.

Finally, he said that not all Indonesian citizens had been evacuated back home. A small team from Afghanistan have been evacuated to Islamabad with the aim of monitoring the developments of the Taliban and Afghanistan on a daily basis. Retno said that team will determine Indonesia’s next steps.

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