Joe Biden thanks Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed for UAE's Afghanistan evacuation help

US president spoke to Sheikh Mohamed by phone and leaders discussed their nations' enduring partnership

Latest: Afghanistan developments live

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, received a phone call from US President Joe Biden thanking the UAE for its help with emergency flights from Afghanistan.

Sheikh Mohamed and Mr Biden spoke on Saturday.

“We highly appreciate the UAE’s humanitarian efforts in facilitating the safe transit of American citizens, embassies’ employees and foreigners who were evacuated from Kabul on their way to a third country,” Mr Biden said in a statement carried by state news agency Wam.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken also thanked the Emirates in a tweet sent on Saturday.

The US has flown at least 17,000 people out of Afghanistan since August 14.

Many were Afghans who worked for the US forces and administration, and were under threat of retaliation from the Taliban.

That figure included about 2,500 Americans, including diplomatic staff and contractors, who were there when Kabul fell to the militants.

Several flights from Afghanistan have arrived in the UAE en route to other countries.

Mr Biden expressed his “appreciation for the United Arab Emirates’ support for the continuing evacuation from Afghanistan of US citizens, diplomatic staff from US and partner nations, and vulnerable Afghan nationals”, the US embassy in Abu Dhabi said in a statement.

“The President and Crown Prince underscored that this collaborative effort reflects the enduring partnership between the United States and the United Arab Emirates. The two leaders agreed on the priority of working together to address regional and global challenges.”

Sheikh Mohamed also received a telephone call from Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez.

Mr Sánchez expressed his gratitude for the UAE's efforts in assisting Spanish citizens, as well as a number of members of diplomatic missions of friendly countries, to leave Afghanistan.

Updated: August 22nd 2021, 12:04 PM
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