Daily US Times: The road to Kabul International Airport – chaotic, crowded and punctuated by regular gunfire – has proved impassable to dozens of Australian visa-holders and citizens trying to reach military evacuation flights out of Afghanistan.
The Australian government issued a public message on Thursday afternoon to Australian citizens and visa-holders in Kabul to travel to the city’s airport to board an evacuation flight out of Afghanistan that has fallen to the Taliban.
That includes a number of former translators who served alongside the Australian military, and whose service – in Australian uniform – has made them targets for Taliban.
But despite Taliban assurances that those seeking to leave Afghanistan would be granted “safe passage”, their fighters blocked the gates to the airport, letting few through, and shooting and beating at some who tried to pass.
Many of those seeking an airlift out of Afghanistan got to within a few hundred metres of the plane that could take them out of the country, only to be pushed back by armed Taliban.
With the hardline Islamist group now in almost total control of Afghanistan and in charge of all of the country’s land borders, Kabul’s airport is the only practicable way out of the country.
While US military has secured Kabul airport itself, the Taliban control checkpoints on all the roads leading to the airport.
Video from Kabul Airport’s civilian side showed a chaotic scene, a mass of humanity pushing forward, then halted by regular rounds of gunfire.
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