First batch of Afghan refugees arrive in Uganda

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51 Afghan refugees arrived at Entebbe International Airport on Wednesday; Courtesy Photo

Uganda has received the first batch of refugees from Afghanistan following the resurgence of instability and the government takeover by the Taliban militants last week.

According to a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 51 Afghan refugees including men, women and children arrived at Entebbe International Airport this morning as part of an arrangement between the Ugandan government and the US government to have Uganda host some of the Afghans fleeing chaos back home.

“The Government of the Republic of Uganda this morning received Fifty One (51) evacuates from Afghanistan who arrived aboard a privately chattered flight at the Entebbe International Airport” The statement from the Foreign Affairs ministry stated.

“The evacuates who include men, women and children underwent the necessary security screening as well as the mandatory COVID-19 testing and the required quarantine measures.” the statement adds.

The move follows a request from the US government and acceptance by the government of Uganda to temporality host at-risk Afghan nationals and other nationals who are in transit to the United States and other destinations worldwide.

However, it was also noted that due to challenges of accessing the airport in Kabul, Ugandans stranded in Afghanistan were not able to travel on this flight as has been planned initially.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said arrangements are being made to bring Ugandans home in the subsequent flight and those arrivals will be communicated in due course.

In another statement, the US Government commended Uganda for demonstrating willingness to play its part in matters of international concern.

“We commend its efforts and those of the local and international organizations in Uganda who are providing humanitarian support in partnership with government of Uganda for these evacuatees from Afghanistan” the US Mission in Kampala stated.

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