According to Germany's interior ministry, some 4,300 former Afghan local staff have told the German government they are at risk and wish to leave Afghanistan. A total of 2,054 local staff and their family members have been brought to Germany thus far.
Together with their closest family members, the number of local staff who remain in Afghanistan is around 18,000. That's significantly lower than a previous estimate of 70,000, a spokesperson of the Germany interior ministry said on Monday (October 18).
The basis for the new figure, according to the spokesperson, were notifications by Afghan local staff to the German government about the risk they are facing due to their past work for the German armed forces (Bundeswehr) in Afghanistan.
According to the spokesperson, the list isn't closed. Additional affected people can be added, the spokesperson said in Berlin. A total of 2,054 local staff and their family members have been brought to Germany thus far. The local staff make up roughly one in four (477) of those people.
Since the end of the NATO military mission in Afghanistan and following the takeover of Kabul by the militant-Islamist Taliban on August 15, a total of 6,311 people were evacuated from Afghanistan to Germany, the spokesperson said further. Among them were 5,441 Afghan and 543 German citizens.
In total, the United States, Germany and other countries airlifted more than 100,000 people out of Kabul in roughly two weeks in late August.
Separate 'human rights list'
A foreign ministry spokesperson confirmed that unlike the local staff list, the list for particularly vulnerable people is closed. According to the spokesperson, 2,600 persons are on this so-called human rights list -- the German government plans to evacuate these people and bring them to Germany. The government assumes the group consists of 6,600 including family members.
Germany's efforts in Afghanistan are not, however, "limited to people on this human rights list," the foreign ministry spokesperson added. There are also programs for "particularly at-risk representatives of the Afghan civil society, meaning culture, art or human rights organizations," she said.
The government has increased the funding for these programs by an additional €10 million to reportedly finance "temporary protective stays and also scholarships," the spokesperson said.
With AFP, KNA