UK to stop evacuation flights from Sudan on Saturday
A British three-year-old girl is currently trapped in Sudan with her Sudanese mother after UK diplomats reportedly refused to evacuate them. Her father, Amar, said Samrin Idris and her mother Amina are understood to be stuck in Port Sudan.
Amar says his family was refused to board the evacuation flight with British officials telling Amina, 41, that she was not allowed as she did not have a visa despite having a child who holds a British passport.
The three-year-old girl is a British citizen but did not have her passport with her as it was left in a bombarded building when she escaped Sudan’s capital with her mother.
Speaking to The Times in Brighton, Amir said: “This morning they [British diplomats] said they would take the child on the flight by herself.
“Then they came back and said they couldn’t take the child without her mother. They changed their mind.”
The Foreign Office did not respond to a request for comment on the case from The Times.
It comes as Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said the British mission in Sudan is “not over yet” despite the end of the evacuation airlift.
He said the situation remained dangerous and officials were still in Port Sudan to help Britons seeking to leave the country.
According to UK Government figures, as of Monday at 5.30pm, the number of people repatriated from the war-torn African nation by Britain’s armed forces stood at 2,197.
Mr Cleverly told GB News: “There is still an ongoing humanitarian situation, we still have a presence at Port Sudan, both a military presence and a number of other government officials to help British nationals and their dependents leave the country.”
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He added: “We will ensure that we maintain a presence to support British nationals, because the situation in Sudan, sadly, is still volatile, and it is still dangerous.”
As well as officials and military personnel in Port Sudan, HMS Lancaster is off the coast to support them.
Mr Cleverly said the evacuation from Sudan would have a “significant” cost to taxpayers.
But he told LBC Radio: “What we have found increasingly now, as people use those land routes to Port Sudan, in many instances they are less in need of an air evacuation from Sudan itself.
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“There are a number of options available from Port Sudan, including a ferry across to Saudi Arabia.”
He added: “At the moment we have a warship just off the coast of Port Sudan, we have a cross-Whitehall team of officials in Port Sudan to help British nationals leave the country.
“We can scale that up, or indeed scale that down, according to circumstances.”
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