Evacuations from Afghanistan: Green politician Marquardt organizes his own charter flights to Kabul
a job Evacuations from Afghanistan

Green politician Marquardt organizes charter flights to Kabul

Gerhard Hegemann

“There is no well-functioning European asylum system”

Eric Marquardt (The Greens) said in an interview with WELT reporter Carolina Druten on Lesbos, that the EU still lacks a fair system for the distribution of refugees. This makes the continent vulnerable to Erdogan, for example, in the Afghanistan crisis.

An initiative led by green politician Eric Marquardt wants to bring the people of Afghanistan to safety. The first evacuation flight is being prepared in detail. Military experts are talking about a very dangerous project.

aActivists involved in maritime rescue operations in the Mediterranean are planning donated charter flights to evacuate people from Kabul. The Civic Support Association, which is headed by 33-year-old green politician Eric Marquardt, claims to have “chartered a plane that we will use to fly to Kabul”.

It literally says on the newly launched website kabulluftbruecke.de: “The formalities have been clarified, and now it’s about implementation.” No details were provided about the time of the planned charter flight or the size of the aircraft.

So far, the German government is using A400M military transport planes to evacuate people at risk after the Islamist Taliban movement came to power. The missions are dangerous. Bundeswehr aircraft perform special approach maneuvers in order to reach the range of guided weapons as late as possible, and are equipped with defensive means that civil aircraft do not have. It remains to be seen whether a civilian chartered plane will be allowed to land.

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Military experts are talking about a very dangerous project. At present, the approach and use of the military part of the Kabul airport is still practically controlled by the United States. Last Monday alone there were 152 take-offs and landings.

According to US data, a total of 21,600 people were flown from Kabul within one day. The US alone carried about 12,700 people with 32 flights on a large C-17 transport plane and five flights on the smaller Hercules C-130. There were also 57 flights from other countries carrying 8,900 passengers.

“The government needs support in the rescue operation”

He heard from insiders that there were alleged talks between the US and the Taliban that Kabul airport should continue to operate as a civilian after the US-mandated withdrawal on August 31, possibly under UN protection.

As stated on the Airlift website, as many people as possible should be rescued from Kabul. “The government needs support in the rescue, because we don’t have any time.” The association is alleged to have “lists of people in need of rescue and are in contact with hundreds of others”.

Literally: “We see that there are more options to make airport access safer and we expect that these options will be used in the coming days.” The largest possible number of aircraft will be organized through donations.

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According to its information, the CCI works closely with the Case Center and Operational Command. “However, the bureaucratic processes of the German bureaucracy prevent flexibility in many areas, which we can guarantee,” the campaign website says.

In a video posted on Twitter, the green politician and the head of the Civic Support Association spoke about the fact that the charter flight to Kabul is “also done in consultation with the federal government”. It has not been reported in advance because it must be confirmed in advance that the charter aircraft can be used. “We want to travel to Kabul as often as possible,” reads the video message associated with the donation request.

In the short term, no more information can be obtained from Green politician Marquardt or the Air Bridge Initiative. “We are currently busy around the clock with the evacuation flight to Kabul. Please understand that we cannot conduct interviews at the moment because we simply do not have the time,” said the initiative. German Army Command and Control said there were no known discussions about specific plans for charter flights to Kabul.

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Marquardt has been the spokesperson for the Green Youth and has been on the board of the Bündnis 90/Die Grünen party since November 2015. Since the European elections in 2019, he has been a member of the European Parliament as part of the Greens/Education for All group. He is president of the Berlin Civilfleet-Support, which has chartered salvage ships for civil sea rescue in the Mediterranean through donations. The charter flights to Kabul initiative now announced by the association is presumably supported by about 100 initiatives and groups, a list appears under the appeal for donations.

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