James Cleverly vows to continue to get people out of Afghanistan as evacuation ends

James Cleverly: UK will continue to help people in Afghanistan

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Foreign Office Minister James Cleverly has promised that “get people out” of Afghanistan even as evacuations are drawing to a close. He was asked about how many Afghan refugees have failed to make it out of the country. However, his claims have caused fury on social media. 

James Cleverly told BBC Newsnight: “Last few weeks we have managed to evacuate over 15,000 people.

“In the months leading up to that when we were advising people to leave Afghanistan, we managed to get that many thousands of people out.

“And we will continue to get people out of Afghanistan, even though Kabul airport is no longer available to us.”

Host Kirsty Wark then asked: “If I can get back to you on the figures. Labour is claiming the figure is close to 5000.

Read more: US betrayed us! Afghan woman slams Biden as ‘no one had chance to leave country’

“Are they right?”

James Cleverly replied: “Well, I just said that we can’t really put a finger on it because what we have said in that third group is that we are looking to be generous, and we are looking at individuals and groups who we know are at risk.

“Whether they be the gay community in Afghanistan, whether they’d be religious minorities, or indeed, individuals who have put themselves forward for political office or have been critical of the Taliban.

He went on: “it is not possible to put an accurate finger on that but as I say, we will continue to evacuate people.

“We are working with international partners to look at the methods by which that can happen.

“But we are not going to stop supporting Afghans who need to leave the country.”

However, viewers seem not to buy his claims.

One user penned: “A rambling display of incompetence answering nothing.

“The magnitude of despair a person must feel being an unopened email must be utterly devastating and there are thousands!

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“Shame on you for discounting their plight, shame on you for not seeing them as human!” 

While another wrote: “We failed to get everyone out because of how badly Ben Wallace, Boris Johnson and Dominic Raab handled the situation.

“And what do they do to deflect their inadequacies? Take responsibility, resign and let people who can do the job do it or more people will die!”

Evacuation efforts will run until August 31.
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