Prime Minister Zaev on coordinative meeting regarding humanitarian mission in Afghanistan: All Macedonian citizens are rescued – we continue rescue efforts for peace-keeping population that has been nurturing democracy in Afghanistan for 20 years

Today in the Government of the Republic of North Macedonia Prime Minister Zoran Zaev organized a coordinative meeting with all involved stake-holders included in the large international humanitarian mission for rescue of civilian and peace-keeping population from Afghanistan. 

PM Zaev, in the name of the Government and on his personal behalf expressed his gratitude to all organizations and institution involved in this global life-rescue mission that was joined by North Macedonia as a leader together with several countries from the region and its NATO allies. The purpose of this mission is to evacuate all Macedonian citizens from the territory of Afghanistan and to rescue locals belonging to the democratic missions in the country. 

The Government of the Republic of North Macedonia so far has undertaken an obligation to accept about 650 citizens – civilians from Afghanistan who are employees and women and children of employees in the humanitarian, democratic and peace-keeping international missions, activists from human rights organizations, journalists, interpreters, students, fellows, as well as citizens who in the past 20 years have provided support to the NATO allied forces in Afghanistan, as well as to the Macedonian army. 
PM Zaev informed the present parties that the last accepted request for providing assistance was given to the International Federation of Journalists and the Individual Union of Journalists and Media Workers to accept 15 journalists, media workers and members of their families; thus, the total number of media workers and members of their families who will be accepted in our country will reach over 80. 

“Our country and our society have capacities and methods for organization and highly expressed feelings of solidarity. We will all show our democratic friends from Afghanistan and the whole world, but also, we will prove to us that in such crisis humanitarian situations there is no other response – the only response is to immediately help with all disposable capacities. We are rescuing peace-keeping population that in the past 20 years has nurtured the democracy in Afghanistan and have provided assistance and support to our Army during its participation in the peace-keeping missions”, said Prime Minister Zaev during the coordinative meeting. 

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed that at this moment all Macedonian citizens are safely evacuated from Afghanistan and they are expected to soon arrive at home, in North Macedonia. 

The Ministry of Interior informed that they secured the safety of the Macedonian citizens, but also of the Afghani citizens who enter the country for humanitarian reasons. Furthermore, MoI undertakes all necessary activities referring to border operations, crossing the national borders and other aspects for regulation of the status and stay of this category of people in our country. 

During the meeting the representatives of the Red Cross presented the plans for acceptance and assistance to the citizens who are expected to arrive in the following days. 

The Red Cross, together with the remaining organizations will secure adequate information, translation and communication with these persons according to their needs, basic materials and hygiene packages, as well as will help meeting the medical needs of these people in coordination with the Ministry of Health. Moreover, tools for communication will be provided in order for these people to maintain their working tasks, recreational activities and activities involving overall support of the people and children during this period. 

At the meeting all operational aspects regarding the temporary stay of persons in hotels and motels were discussed, as well as the transfer to their end destinations such as the USA. The costs for these activities will be covered by the international organizations.