NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — As continued fighting raises fears that Sudan could plunge deeper into chaos, foreign governments are scrambling to get their diplomats and other citizens safely out of the country. Most countries deployed military transport aircraft to fly people out, including France which used its airbase in neighboring Djibouti for the airlift. But not all is going smoothly – about 2,000 British nationals remain in Sudan, and many complain that their government isn’t giving them enough information about evacuation plans.
Although some flights included people of various nationalities, here’s a country-by-country accounting of evacuation efforts based on information available so far:
U.S. special operations forces used helicopters to ferry 70 U.S. embassy personnel out of the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, early Sunday. The U.S. government has told some 16,000 US citizens in Sudan that they need to fend for themselves and that there won’t be mass evacuations.
Some 1,200 British soldiers who were part of a military operation out of a key British air base on the east Mediterranean island of Cyprus helped evacuate around 30 U.K. diplomatic staff and their families out of Sudan. Arrangements are being made to fly the evacuees back home from Cyprus. There’s been no word on how many people were evacuated. Britain’s Middle East Minister, Andrew Mitchell, said about 2,000 U.K. citizens still in Sudan have registered with the embassy and that “intense planning” was underway for a “series of possible evacuations.”
France brought out 388 people, including citizens from 28 countries in Europe, Africa, Asia and North America, on four flights to Djibouti, in the nearby Horn of Africa, two of them overnight Sunday.
Three German military transport planes flew 311 people from Sudan to Jordan from where they’ll head to their home countries. Germany’s Foreign Ministry said Monday about half of the 311 were foreign nationals. The dpa news agency said among the evacuees were citizens of Australia, Bulgaria, the U.K., Belgium, Norway, Czechia, Ireland, Sweden, Portugal. The Austrian government said 27 people where Austrian citizens.
Italian Air Force C-130 transport aircraft airlifted some 200 people out of Khartoum airport Sunday evening and flew them to Djibouti. Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani said among them were 140 Italians, some Swiss, other Europeans and personnel from the Vatican’s embassy in Khartoum.
Spain said it had evacuated approximately 172 people from the Sudanese capital to Djibouti so far, including 34 Spanish nationals and citizens of Argentina, Colombia, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Portugal and Poland.
SWEDEN & DENMARK:
Sweden says 25 of its embassy staff and their families were among the 388 people that French aircraft airlifted to Djibouti. Denmark said 15 of its citizens were among the group.
Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto tweeted that 10 Finns had been evacuated from Khartoum, including children. He said efforts were underway to evacuate several Finns who remain in the Sudanese capital.
Norway’s Ambassador to Sudan Endre Stiansen has tweeted that he and two colleagues are “in a safe place outside the Sudan.”
Poland’s Foreign Ministry said 11 Poles – including the ambassador to Sudan, diplomatic staff and private citizens – have been evacuated as part of French and Spanish efforts.
A Dutch air force C-130 Hercules flew out of Sudan to Jordan early Monday carrying evacuees of various nationalities, including Dutch. No exact numbers have been provided.
The Turkish government says it’s evacuating “hundreds” of its citizens by land to Ethiopia, from where they are scheduled to be flown to Istanbul.
Greece’s Foreign Ministry says that 15 Greek nationals and their family members have been evacuated to Djibouti with the help of Italy.
Japan said transport aircraft on standby in Djibouti would be sent to Sudan to airlift Japanese nationals once preparations were completed. Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said Monday the aircraft would be sent to an undisclosed location inside Sudan to get people out.
The South African government says at least 77 South African nationals, including embassy staff, are on on their way out of the Sudanese capital.
Kenya’s Foreign Ministry says 29 Kenyan students have crossed into Ethiopia and are in route to Nairobi, while the air force has a transport plane ready to fly out 18 students now on the road to the South Sudan border. Another two aircraft are expected to ferry 300-400 Kenyans to Jeddah.
The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates says some 72 Palestinians have relocated to Port Sudan while vehicle convoys are carrying about 200 Palestinians to Egypt.
South Korea says a bus transporting at least 28 of its nationals, including embassy staff, has entered Port Sudan’s international airport where a South Korean military aircraft awaits to fly them out.
Some 343 Jordanian nationals evacuated from Port Sudan arrived at Amman military airport aboard four transport aircraft.
Egypt’s state-run MENA news agency says the country is urging the more than 10,000 Egyptian citizens in Sudan to head to consular offices in Port Sudan and Wadi Halfa in the north for evacuation. Buses carrying an undisclosed number of Egyptian citizens crossed into Egypt from the Arqin border crossing on Monday.
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