Since the fall of Kabul, Afghanistan to the Taliban forces on 15th August, the world has joined together to rescue their nationals and Afghans. We have compiled a list of ten countries that are flying day and night, in very difficult conditions, to rescue as many people as possible.
Please note the below list of countries is not complete or exhaustive. There are some countries we did not cover in this post. (The Netherlands, Czech Republic, Denmark etc)
Canada is using two CC-177 Globemaster’s to rescue Canadian nationals and Afghan refugees fleeing the Taliban takeover. The first flight left Kabul airport late Thursday evening, carrying 175 Afghans and 13 foreign nationals.
#BREAKING: This Boeing CC-177 Globemaster III of #RCAF with 177702 serial number has all the #Canadian citizens including staff of #Canada's embassy in #Kabul onboard. It left #Afghanistan two hours ago. pic.twitter.com/j3RVuRqDUi
“The Globemaster’s are currently being reconfigured to carry the maximum number of people as safely as possible, and Canadian Armed Forces personnel are empowered to make decisions on the ground in the interest of saving human lives.”
On 18th August the first of three Afghanistan evacuee flights, on behalf of the German government, arrived at Frankfurt with 130 people.
The Airbus A340-300 from Lufthansa picked up passengers who had been taken by the German air force from the Afghan capital of Kabul to the Uzbek capital of Tashkent. Further special flights from Tashkent, Doha and other neighbouring nations are due to be used for evacuation purposes in the next few days.
The first of 3 Afghanistan evacuee flights on behalf of the German government by Lufthansa is now en route. Currently scheduled are a second flight from Tashkent and one from Doha. Evacuees were flown out of Afghanistan on other transports first. https://t.co/o1ytdxEv6T pic.twitter.com/G3UGUSSNHc
Also, German Joint Forces are performing rescue flights using the A400; as of yesterday 11 flights had been performed, with 1640 people on board in total.
Insgesamt über 1000 zu Schützende in Sicherheit! Mit 230 Personen an Bord ist der 8. Flug der Bundeswehr auf dem Weg von #Kabul nach Taschkent. Unsere #A400M pendeln vor Ort zwischen #Afghanistan und Usbekistan. Um die zu Schützenden schnellstmöglich auszufliegen. pic.twitter.com/QU60oUVrxK
Pakistan International Airlines was the only commercial airline continuing to fly to Kabul, after all the others had pulled out by 16th August.
However after multiple flights and evacuating about 2000 people from Kabul, including journalists, diplomats and staff of the IMF/World Bank, PIA decided to suspend operations, due to unsafe tarmac and taxiways, debris and lack of relevant airport staff and facilities for flight operations.
Here @Ali_Mustafa shares one of the most under reported stories of courage and duty. #Pakistan’s embassy in #Kabul under @ambmansoorkhan and PIA ✈️ have been flying daily. Here how they helped 250 @WorldBank employees leave safely. pic.twitter.com/pIWFBdsf4e
On Friday 20th, PIA operated two flights using an A320 and a Boeing 777. The CEO of PIA, Arshad Malik, personally flew to Kabul to assess the situation.
I’m being told this is reason PIA decided to stop it’s flight for Kabul. On his visit CEO PIA did an FOD walk at Kabul airport & found stuff that should not be there. Mostly trash & debris from the run over which he is seen clearing on the taxiway of the aircraft. pic.twitter.com/lF0O880jkH
The US is by far the country that is performing the most rescue flights, with multiple flights being made daily. President Joe Biden said on Friday that the US has evacuated approximately 13.000 people since last weekend and 18.000 since July.
On 15th August, the USA Air Force transported 823 Afghan citizens from Hamid Karzi International Airport. A new record for the C-17 Globemaster. The original count of 640 was including only adults, 183 children were also onboard.
CORRECTION: A @usairforce C-17 Globemaster III safely transported 823 Afghan citizens from Hamid Karzai International Airport Aug. 15, 2021. This is a record for this aircraft.⁰
The initial count of 640 inadvertently included only adults. 183 children were also aboard. https://t.co/DL6wP8WTQV
On Friday, CNN International Correspondent Clarissa Ward shared details of her flight out of Kabul onboard a C-17. The flight departed for Doha, with nearly 300 Afghans and US nationals onboard.
On our flight and getting ready for takeoff pic.twitter.com/bGaYREsbxT
Yesterday an Afghan mother delivered a baby girl just after touching down at Ramstein Air Base in Germany. The mother started having complications, while the aircraft was at its flight altitude, due to the lower cabin pressure in the plane.
“The aircraft commander decided to descend in altitude to increase air pressure in the aircraft, which helped stabilize and save the mother’s life.”
Medical support personnel from the 86th Medical Group help an Afghan mother and her family off a @usairforce C-17 Globemaster III moments after she delivered a baby aboard the aircraft at @RamsteinAirBase in Germany. pic.twitter.com/339bMiVDVO
On 21st August, National Airlines A330-200 (Flight Number NCR420, Registration N819CA) was the first US commercial carrier to airlift Afghan evacuees to the US. The aircraft, with 270 passengers, landed at Washington Dulles Airport on Saturday around 13:20.
The journey of 6,942 miles was covered in 14 hours and 37 mins from Al Udeid Air Force Base in Qatar, with a technical stop In Sofia, Bulgaria.
Today the Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin has ordered the Civil Reserve Air Fleet to activate, requesting 18 aircraft from various US airlines, to help with the evacuation of Afghans and Americans. It’s only the third time in history that the US airlines have been mobilized by the military.
American Airlines, Atlas Air, Omni Air and Delta are to provide three aircraft each, Hawaiian Airlines must provide two aircraft and United Airlines will provide four planes. These aircraft will not be flying into Kabul, they will be used for picking up passengers from staging bases in the Middle East and flying them to the US or other locations.
Up to today, 378 people have arrived at Torrejón airbase, close to Madrid, in six aircraft. Last night two A400M’s left Kabul for Dubai with 177 persons onboard, 110 of which are Afghan collaborators from Spain and the remaining 67 from the United States.
Ya han aterrizado en Dubái los dos aviones A400 de @DefensaGob procedentes de Kabul. Las dos aeronaves llevan 177 pasajeros a bordo, de los que 110 son afganos colaboradores de España y los 67 restantes, de EE.UU. pic.twitter.com/uLq4HCBRP2
The French Air Force A400M performed a new evacuation on Saturday 21st. As the aircraft took off from Al Dhafra Air Base, it fired anti-missile flares; it is still unknown why. Since Monday more than 570 people have been evacuated from Kabul onboard A400M and C130 aircraft supplied by the French army.
France is also using the Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) to fly people for the second journey from UAE to Paris, they have made five flights in the last five days.
La mobilisation continue. pic.twitter.com/cSNFXs3PG7
According to IndiaToday, the country has been allowed to operate two flights per day to evacuate its citizens from Kabul.
As of today, India has brought back close to 400 people on three flights; the first using an IAF C-17, from Kabul to Hindon airbase close to Delhi, with 168 people onboard. Another group of 87 Indians and two Nepalese nationals were also flown in a special Air India flight from Dushanbe.
IAF special repatriation flight with 168 passengers onboard, including 107 Indian nationals, is on its way to Delhi from Kabul. pic.twitter.com/ysACxClVdX
The Royal Australian Air Force is using both the C-130 and the C-17 to take Australian citizens, and Australian visa holders, out of Kabul. Most of these rescue flights are destined to the Al Minhad Air Force Base in the UAE. From there a chartered Hi Fly A340 is to transport them to Australia.
More families out of Kabul.
Australian citizens and visa holders have departed Hamid Karzai Airport, Afghanistan on one of our C-17A Globemasters.
We're continuing to support Aus Govt efforts evacuating people from Afghanistan. More info: https://t.co/xiY6krFP0l#AusAirForce pic.twitter.com/zKoBxiQ3Un
The Belgian Air Force sent two C130s to fly evacuees from Kabul to Islamabad, from there an A330 MRTT has taken the passenger to Europe.
The two @BeAirforce #C130s are being prepared for departure shortly to Pakistan for the evacuation of fellow countrymen from Afghanistan. @15WAirTransport @BelgiumDefence #NEO pic.twitter.com/RPs3LmvDqI
Right now an Air Belgium Airbus A340 is on its way to Islamabad, Pakistan to bring evacuees that were flown from Kabul back to Belgium, on behalf of the Belgium government.
An Air Belgium A340 is now en route to Islamabad to bring evacuees from Afghanistan back to Europe. https://t.co/4caoA6peyr pic.twitter.com/npdwAnOvTE
The Royal Air Force deployed a C-17 and an A400M to Kabul, to transport evacuees to the UAE. From there, the A330 MRTT is transporting them to the UK.
Royal Air Force's @Airbus A400M is on its way to #Afghanistan.
Track #NAG82XT on #RadarBox: https://t.co/DtIIXylNZH#Airbus #A400M #Kabul #KabulAirport pic.twitter.com/qaRxPgnG6D
The entire Defence community could not be prouder of the work being done right now by @BritishArmy @RoyalAirForce @RoyalNavy @RoyalMarines in Kabul. 🇬🇧
Everyday they are saving lives. pic.twitter.com/y94M9sVbMn
“We haven’t sent out a single empty plane,” British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace told Sky News, adding that unfilled seats had been allocated to NATO allies.
Wallace has said that 2,000 Britons and Afghan employees will be called by Britain to leave Afghanistan in the coming days.
Yesterday 379 Turkish nationals departed from Kabul via two A400M aircraft from the Turkish Air Force.
The moment Turkish Air Force evacuates Turkish citizens from #Kabul with an A400 military transport plane. Turkish troops provide security. pic.twitter.com/lSeL9lObZI
Last Monday, 16th August, Turkish Airlines Boeing 777 was the last civilian airplane managed to land in Kabul after being in a holding pattern for almost an hour; amid the chaos at the airport the aircraft took off with 324 passengers onboard.
#TK706 | #TK707 timeline (times UTC)
03:14 TK706 lands at KBL
06:03 TK707 1st taxi to runway
06:28 Hold at RWY intersection
07:24 Return to parking
08:35 2nd taxi to runway
08:48 Departure from KBL
13:48 Landing at ISThttps://t.co/pYaGO42J4L pic.twitter.com/qnG5Knxny3
On 20th August the Indonesia Air Force sent a Boeing 737-400 to evacuate 26 of their citizens, plus five Filipinos and two Afghan nationals, from Kabul via Pakistan.
Until yesterday the Italian Air Force rescued 1600 Afghans to Rome using a Boeing KC-767A and C-130J.
Attività senza sosta per le #ForzeArmate🇮🇹 per realizzare il ponte aereo che con velivoli dell’#AeronauticaMilitare ha portato in Italia finora oltre 1600 afghani, gli ultimi 103 giunti nella serata di ieri a Fiumicino dall'#Afghanistan#COVI #Difesa#UnaForzaperilPaese#21agosto pic.twitter.com/NF9iR6JRqi
Please note the below list of countries is not complete or exhaustive. There are countries we did not cover in this post. (The Netherlands, Czech Republic, Denmark, New Zealand etc)
Catarina was born in Lisbon, Portugal. Since childhood, she became an aviation enthusiast. 3 years ago, she became interested in aviation photography. Catarina graduated with Mechanical Engineering and is now doing the B1 AME license.
A. Vargas- I don’t think this is the time or the right moment to talk about this issue. As the Taliban takes over the airport by September 1st, the only thing that matters now is to evacuate as many more people as possible. Which isn’t easy, as they’re not allowed to go to the airport anymore. So the rescue teams need to be super smart and focused- and I don’t care where they are from, as long as those poor, threatened people get out on time.
Interesting how many people are evacuated and settled by the rich, arab, muslim brethren in the oil rich Gulf states!
Hi Catarina, while correct that LH transports people from Taschkent to Germany the real evacuation flights are all done by six German Luftwaffe aircrafts between Kabul and Taschkent
– A400M 54+23
– A400M 54+28
– A400M 54+27 (probaly the MedEvac)
– A400M 54+32
– A310 MRTT 10+23
– A400M 54+34
On one flight a A400M transported 229 persons which is way above the normal capacity of 116.
Best reporting yet on the numbers and the evacuees. Also enjoyed the interview with the PIA captain, and his perspectives on the operational challenges.
Thank you, Sam.
Good Evening Sam,
YOUR AVIATION AS WELL AS TRAVEL UPDATES & INFORMATION.
UNABLE BE VALUED IN DOLLARS !
IMPROVED OUT – OF – SIGHT MATE OVER LAST 12 SOME MONTHS.
HAVE ONLY ONLY JUST STARTED SUBSCRIPTION !
Are the deaf students safe at school for the deaf in Kabul?
Sam, You are the man! Thanks for all of your factual reporting on this crisis.
Dear Mister Sam Chui,
Thank you ever so much for your professionally presented update on the Afghanistan air evacuation processes … we all deeply honour and appreciate your contributions and due to my personal ties to Afghanistan and her good people, my heart is particularly touched by your compassionate concern and contributions in sharing this news.
As one of your dedicated fans subscribes to your frequently updates, I immensely enjoy all of your aviation/airliner video presentations, you are in mind, the very best and most professional video-blog aficionado there is. Thank you and God bless you Mister Sam!
While it’s wonderful that Lufthansa is sending two A340 aircraft, why not send A380s or 747s with greater seating capacity?
You have forgotten the Philippines in your article. Thanks! 🙂
Thanks for this article. Missing the Dutch contribution. Hopefully you can add this.
The Netherlands should also be mentioned. Out of my head a Hungarian C-17 was involved (so: another country you can mention), two A-330 MRTTs and their DC-10.
Actually Italy is operating at least one flight a day with their c130
And several others have also been made with their KC-767’s from Kuwait City.
And don’t forget Belgium: they have two military planes (C130) that fly people from Kabul to Islamabad, where civilian flights can take over. The first two missions were unsuccessful, in the second two they managed to rescue over 300 people and the mission is still ongoing- there are 580 people on the list.
Thanks, we have added Belgium now.
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