Sturgeon says Scotland ready to do what it can to help Afghan refugees

‘I hope UK government offers as much refuge for vulnerable Afghans as possible,’ Scottish first minister says

Zoe Tidman
Sunday 15 August 2021 15:30
<p>Nicola Sturgeon has said Scotland will play its ‘full part’ in helping refugees fleeing Afghanistan</p>

Nicola Sturgeon has said Scotland will play its ‘full part’ in helping refugees fleeing Afghanistan

Nicola Sturgeon has said Scotland is ready to do all it can to help refugees fleeing Afghanistan amid the Taliban’s rapid offensive in the country.

The insurgent group has taken control of all major cities and replaced Afghan security forces in wide swathes of the country in just over a week, entering the capital Kabul on Sunday.

Scotland’s first minister said her government would support those fleeing the “horrifying situation currently unfolding” in the country.

She shared a tweet showing a plane of Afghan refugees arriving in Canada, which mentioned the country’s pledge to resettle 20,000 people threatened by the Taliban and forced to leave Afghanistan.

“I hope UK government does similar and offers as much refuge for vulnerable Afghans as possible,” Ms Sturgeon tweeted.

She said the Scottish government was “willing to play our full part and do all we can to help those in peril as a result of the horrifying situation currently unfolding”, in the same way it did with refugees from Syria.

The Taliban started entering Kabul on Sunday, when the Afghan capital was the only major city not under the militant group’s control.

At the weekend, the insurgents captured Mazar-e-Sharif, a large and heavily-defended city that was the Afghan government’s last northern stronghold, and the eastern city of Jalalabad.

The group also seized the nearby Torkham border post with Pakistan at the weekend, leaving Kabul airport the only way out of Afghanistan still in government hands.

The militant group’s rapid takeover of key parts of Afghanistan comes nearly two decades after it was forced out of power as the US invaded the country.

The UK parliament has been recalled on Wednesday to debate the crisis unfolding in Afghanistan.

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