Photo: Royal New Zealand Air Force C-130H(NZ) Hercules arrives into the Australian Defence Force's main operating base in the UAE. Credit: Australian Defence Force.
The New Zealand Defence Force is continuing to support international efforts to evacuate New Zealanders and other nationals from Afghanistan. We have a team of 19 personnel based at Hamid Karzai International Airport (HKIA) who have been liaising with evacuees and working alongside partner nations to facilitate evacuations. The NZDF has a contingent of about 80 personnel deployed to support the mission.
We are pleased to have helped assist in the return of the first group of evacuees home to New Zealand. It’s been a multi-agency effort to achieve this. Currently, another group is at the evacuation centre in HKIA awaiting evacuation.
Our personnel have been able to meet more New Zealanders, their families and other eligible nationals at the gates of the airport over the weekend and assist them to the evacuation centre inside, where they are being supported. The situation on the ground in Kabul remains extremely challenging, and it has been distressing to see the chaotic scenes outside HKIA and the desperation of some of those wanting to leave Afghanistan. Officials have been working hard to get information out to those New Zealanders and eligible nationals seeking to evacuate.
The Royal New Zealand Air Force C-130H(NZ) Hercules that has been deployed in support of the international evacuation efforts arrived at an air base in the Middle East region over the weekend.
With safety and security considerations in mind, we are not going to provide timings of its deployment into Kabul. However, we will look to update media as the situation allows.
View more about our support to the Afghanistan evacuations here.