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Last Belgian evacuation flight with 37 people on board arrived on Friday morning

The last flight carrying people evacuated by the Belgian military from the Afghan capital Kabul touched down at Melsbroek Military Airport (Flemish Brabant) on Friday morning. 37 people were aboard the flight that took off from the Pakistani capital Islamabad on Thursday night. Previously they had been taken from Kabul to Islamabad.

On Wednesday the Belgian Government announced that the evacuation mission Operation Red Kite was to come to an end due to the deterioration in the security situation in and around Kabul Airport. 

It was an Air Belgium charter flight that brought the 37 evacuees from Islamabad to Melsbroek. Among them were 6 Belgians, 3 Hungarians and 15 Bulgarians. On their arrival they were split up according to their nationality and taken to the Peutie Army Barracks a couple of kilometres from Melsbroek. The charter plane will return to Islamabad in case any more people require repatriation.  

On Wednesday evening Belgium’s Federal Government announced that the evacuation mission was being halted “given the evolution of the situation in Afghanistan and in line with our European partners”.

That the security situation in and around Kabul Airport has deteriorated was confirmed only too graphically by Thursday's suicide bombings carried out by IS Khorasan.  

In 6 days, 23 Belgian evacuation flights took more than 1,400 people from Kabul to Islamabad.

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