The UK and the Taliban are in direct talks to discuss how British nationals and allied Afghans who remain in Afghanistan can safely leave the county, a Downing Street spokesperson said in a statement on Tuesday.
“The prime minister’s special representative for Afghan transition, Simon Gass, has travelled to Doha and is meeting with senior Taliban representatives to underline the importance of safe passage out of Afghanistan for British nationals, and those Afghans who have worked with us over the past 20 years”, the spokesperson pointed out.
The statement comes after Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab acknowledged that it would be a “challenge” for Britons, who are currently in Afghanistan, to find a route to the UK.
In an interview with Sky News, he claimed that the number of Britons who had not been airlifted as part of the now-finished UK evacuation was in the “low hundreds”.
Earlier, Defense Secretary Ben Wallace insisted that up to 250 Britons eligible for relocation remain in Afghanistan.
Raab, for his part, said that more than 17,000 people had been evacuated from Afghanistan so far, including over 5,000 UK nationals.
Referring to the UK nationals remaining in Afghanistan, the foreign secretary said that “most of those are difficult cases where it’s not clear around eligibility because they’re undocumented”.