France evacuates more than 300 people from Afghanistan


France has carried out an evacuation mission in Afghanistan, removing 258 Afghans, 11 French, some 60 Dutch and an unknown number of people linked to them, a French Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said on Friday.

The operation was organized with the help of Qatar, a ministry statement said.

The evacuees included Afghans who were at risk, such as journalists, as well as people with ties to France, including civilian workers employed by the French military. Since September 10, 110 French and 396 Afghans have been evacuated from Afghanistan in 10 flights organized with the help of Qatar, the statement added.

France and Qatar jointly operated a humanitarian mission on Thursday, delivering medical equipment, food and winter supplies to international organizations operating in the country with a Qatari military plane, the French Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said.

The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) this week outlined an “alarming” socio-economic outlook for Afghanistan over the next 13 months. Afghanistan is battling a sharp drop in international development aid after the Taliban took power in August, and the UNDP has projected that poverty may become near universal by mid-2022.