Advice to constituents in Afghanistan 'not safe', MP's office says

Taliban fighters stand guard on the road to the Hamid Karzai International Airport, in Kabul, Afghan

Taliban fighters stand guard on the road to Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan - Credit: AP

A woman and child who were given advice to make their way to Pakistan alone to escape the Afghanistan crisis have been monitored by the office of a Norwich MP. 

Despite the government setting up the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy [ARAP] for Afghans who have supported the British efforts, the office of South Norwich MP Clive Lewis believe people are being let down. 

A person handling emergency cases for Mr Lewis, who did not wish to be named, said there are at least two examples of constituents being deemed incorrectly deemed ineligible for ARAP in their eyes. 

She added that the majority of cases being dealt with in Afghanistan relate to spouses or people who constituents are dependent on.

Norwich South MP Clive Lewis. Pic: Yui Mok/PA Images.

Norwich South MP Clive Lewis. Pic: Yui Mok/PA Images. - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

The emergency case worker said: "There was advice given to a woman and child to make their way to the Pakistan embassy which in our view was not safe for them to travel alone in Taliban controlled Afghanistan. 

"Constituents have told us about advice they have received from the FCO [foreign office] which we believe is potentially putting lives at risk." 

Another family with a relative in Norwich has been trying to make their way to Iran from the Taliban-occupied country. 

The office has been trying to get as many information from relatives in the county before relaying it to the FCO and ministry of defence. 

Most Read

A briefing with MPs was led by foreign secretary Dominic Raab on Tuesday in which Mr Lewis' office was informed no specific deadline for withdrawal has been set due to fears over a potential crush at Kabul airport. 

Dominic Raab leaves the foreign office as criticism grows

Dominic Raab briefed MPs including the office of Clive Lewis on Tuesday - Credit: Photo by Tolga Akmen/AFP via Getty Images

Mr Lewis said: "Case workers have been working around the clock to get people out but it just looks like the people we are helping just won't be airlifted out. 

"I think there has been real Herculean efforts to get paperwork through but it feels to us like the home office is going through the motions with it." 

Mr Raab has said foreign office are working 24/7 in Kabul, Dubai and the UK to get nationals and Afghans who have helped the British to safety.

The government said that, as of Tuesday, over 10,900 people have left Afghanistan since April. 

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter