All networks reported at noon on the ongoing SDF operation to evacuate Japanese nationals and local embassy staff from Afghanistan, saying it has become a race against time following the explosions near the Kabul airport that claimed more than 70 lives. NHK said that although the Defense Ministry and the SDF are hoping to swiftly evacuate Japanese nationals and others from Afghanistan, the three SDF transport planes and government plane deployed from Japan are still standing by at an airport in Islamabad as of Friday morning because it has become difficult for those who wish to evacuate to get to the Kabul airport due to the deteriorating security situation. As a result, the SDF reportedly decided to forgo sending its transport planes to Kabul this morning, the network said.
TBS said that Chief Cabinet Secretary Kato told the press that no Japanese nationals were among the casualties from the explosions in Afghanistan. He also reportedly said: “The situation remains uncertain and unpredictable, but we will work closely with the United States and other nations and continue to make efforts to safely evacuate Japanese nationals, local embassy staff, and others while ensuring the safety of the SDF members deployed to the Kabul airport.”