Czech leaders have approved a plan to evacuate Afghan staffers at the Czech embassy in Kabul.
The Czechs already had evacuated their own diplomats from the embassy and transported them to Kabul´s international airport.
Czech Foreign Minister Jakub Kulhanek said Afghan staffers are at risk of “death and torture” if they stay, adding, “We simply can’t allow that to happen.”
The announcement Sunday came as the Taliban seized the last major city outside of Kabul held by the country´s central government, cutting off the capital to the east.
Defense Minister Lubomir Metnar said the Czechs will help those Afghans who worked with Czech troops during their deployment in NATO missions.
Metnar said his country is ready to take care of Afghan interpreters and their families. “We will relocate those who have asked, to the Czech Republic,” Metnar said. The evacuation flights should take place in the next days.
Afghan president flees the country
Afghanistan’s embattled president left the country Sunday, joining his fellow citizens and foreigners in a stampede fleeing the advancing Taliban and signaling the end of a 20-year Western experiment aimed at remaking Afghanistan.
The Taliban entered the capital early Sunday and an official in the militant group said it would soon announce the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan from the presidential palace — a return rich in symbolism to the name of the country under the Taliban government ousted by U.S.-led forces after the 9/11 attacks.
Afghans fearing that the Taliban could reimpose the kind of brutal rule that all but eliminated women’s rights rushed to leave the country as well, lining up at cash machines to withdraw their life savings.
The desperately poor — who had left homes in the countryside for the presumed safety of the capital — remained in their thousands in parks and open spaces throughout the city.