26 October 2021,   15:24
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Georgia got involved in urgent evacuation from Afghanistan - NATO military transport planes have been deployed at Tbilisi Airport

Georgia got involved in urgent evacuation from Afghanistan - NATO military transport planes have been deployed at Tbilisi Airport.

“Georgia has been actively participating in the international mission of NATO in Afghanistan over years. Armed forces of our country were deployed first in the ISAF operation, and later in the RSM mission. For the past 10 years, Georgia has been one of the largest contributors to the NATO RSM mission in Afghanistan, carrying out the most demanding military mission in the hotspots of Afghanistan. By engaging in these operations, Georgia, as a future member of the Alliance, has demonstrated its ability to carry the responsibility of collective defense with dignity and to be a supporter of global security. Georgia also played an important role in the completion of the NATO operation in Afghanistan, when the withdrawal of armed forces of member states from Afghanistan was carried out using the territory of Georgia.

Today, when the tragic events in Afghanistan put us in danger of a large-scale humanitarian crisis, Georgia stands by its partners and is actively involved in the management of humanitarian and evacuation processes. Military cargo planes of the NATO Military Cargo Transportation Organization are currently stationed at Tbilisi airport and they perform daily flights to Kabul. Evacuated people are flown from Kabul to Tbilisi airport via various charter flights (up to 2000 passengers have been flown so far under the evacuation initiative). A Regional Transit Hub has been established at Tbilisi International Airport and at the military base station of Georgian Defense Forces near the airport, with engagement of Georgian, Norwegian, Swedish and other member states of NATO through civilian and military personnel. Also, a Transit Healthcare Unit was set up by the Norwegian Armed Forces on the territory of the referred military base station, which will be used during the evacuation of a Norwegian Military Hospital of Kabul, if necessary.

As commonly known, various international organizations and partner countries are carrying out emergency humanitarian evacuations of their staff and families from Afghanistan. As a worthy member of the international community, Georgia decided to get involved in this process after consulting with partners.

As a result, the Georgia agreed to honor the application of several international organizations, namely the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the International Republican Institute (IRI), the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (WB) and will be assisting in evacuating their staff for a temporary placement in Georgia.

Safety regulations against COVID-19 are observed when admitting and accommodating them in Georgia, while the costs related to their stay in the country are reimbursed by the relevant international institutions”, - reads the statement.

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