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Sky News reporter accuses UK military of covering up Kabul chaos as he is ejected on ‘MoD orders’

Sky News’ Stuart Ramsay has recounted how his team was ‘ejected’ from Kabul, claiming the move was made ‘on MoD or Whitehall orders’ to prevent filming of the withdrawal from Afghanistan.

The outlet’s chief correspondent had been reporting on the desperate attempts of thousands to flee the country after the Taliban took control of the capital on August 15.

In an article for Sky News, written before the evacuation area was hit by two explosions on Thursday, Ramsay recalled being ‘kicked out’ of a British evacuation base.

‘The operational commanders wanted us to stay to the very end and leave with them, but the orders to remove us came from the MoD or from Whitehall, or both,’ Ramsay wrote.

‘We had fought to stay for days but ultimately we found ourselves on a military base and we were being ejected – there is nothing you can do.

‘It was all conducted in a cordial manner, but we WERE kicked out.

Sky News’ Stuart Ramsay has recounted how his team was ‘ejected’ from Kabul, claiming the move was made ‘on MoD or Whitehall orders’ to prevent filming of the withdrawal from Afghanistan 

‘I suspect the prospect of the withdrawal being filmed in heart-breaking detail was a risk the government wasn’t prepared to take, because this will end badly for thousands, I guarantee it,’ the veteran reporter said.

Ramsay was among the journalists documenting the scramble to evacuate foreign nationals and Afghans from Kabul before the August 31 deadline for the withdrawal of U.S. and NATO forces from the country.

Even before Thursday’s deadly explosions, Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport had seen days of chaotic scenes as thousands tried desperately to secure safe passage out of the country.

Stuart Ramsay was among the journalists documenting the international withdrawal from Afghanistan

Stuart Ramsay was among the journalists documenting the international withdrawal from Afghanistan

As the deadline draws closer, Western powers have expressed concerns about the ability to evacuate all foreign nationals, and worries are mounting over reports that the Taliban are preventing Afghan citizens, some of whom aided international efforts in the country – and are therefore at risk, from travelling to the airport area.

In his article, Ramsay expressed guilt over the ease with which he was able to leave compared to those still struggling for safety. 

‘We felt guilty we were leaving – myself, my producer Dominique, Sky colleague Martin, and Toby. An easy exit for a group of journalists guaranteed safety by our soldiers and our governments.’

But, he wrote, that the team’s presence had ensured the desperation of the situation was broadcast to the world.    

‘No end of news conferences and ministerial interviews will hide the fact that any of the discussions about 31 August deadlines or extensions were hiding some basic truths:

‘The Taliban are in control, the Western powers have little influence and the tens, even hundreds, of thousands, who had legitimate rights and expectations to be protected and removed by their former employers, are being abandoned,’ he wrote’

‘…If we hadn’t been there, nobody would have seen any of the scenes of horror and desperation that have engulfed this entire operation, none of the incredible work by the British military, and the Foreign and Home Office staff.’

Ramsay described his team’s journey to the airport, during which the convoy he was travelling in ‘passed the hundreds knee-deep in sewage, pleading to have their cases heard with soldiers from across the world, looking down into the stinking water six feet below.’ 

According to Pentagon figures, there are 10,000 people waiting inside the airport, but outside the numbers struggling to get in are far greater. 

‘Everywhere one looked, people were sleeping rough, sheltering beneath sheets, waiting for their turn,’ Ramsay wrote.

The Sky News team travelled aboard a U.S. plane full of Afghan refugees to Doha, Qatar. 

‘[The other passengers] will go to countries, communities and cultures that are utterly alien. But they will survive,’ Ramsay wrote.  

According to Pentagon figures, there are 10,000 people waiting inside the airport, but outside the numbers struggling to get in are far greater

According to Pentagon figures, there are 10,000 people waiting inside the airport, but outside the numbers struggling to get in are far greater 

‘I can’t get the faces of those left behind out of my mind, standing in sewage, pleading for help. I never will.’

Ramsay wrote that he had spoken to an officer at the Kabul camp his team had been ejected from before sitting down to write his article.

‘I asked him what it was like. He told me it was grim and that between 15 and 30 hardcore Taliban had taken over the entrance and were beating people.

‘I asked if it was going to end badly.

‘100% Stuart. 100%.’

On Thursday, twin bomb attacks rocked Kabul airport, in which the Taliban said at least 13 people were killed.

The BBC later reported that at least 60 were dead and 140 others injured, citing a senior Afghan health official. 

The explosions hit outside the Abbey Gate, where US and British forces have been stationed, and at a nearby hotel. 

American servicemen are among the dead, according to the Pentagon and US media.

The attack followed warnings that the large crowds of people gathering to evacuate could become a target for an attack by militants.   

On Thursday, twin bomb attacks rocked Kabul airport, in which the Taliban said at least 13 people were killed.

On Thursday, twin bomb attacks rocked Kabul airport, in which the Taliban said at least 13 people were killed.

The BBC later reported that at least 60 were dead and 140 others injured, citing a senior Afghan health official

The BBC later reported that at least 60 were dead and 140 others injured, citing a senior Afghan health official 


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