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Airlifted Afghans to receive temporary shelter in Albania

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Yuri Kim, ambassador of the United States to Albania, has revealed that a contingent of Afghans will be arriving in the Balkan country, without giving a precise figure. “We do not yet have the exact number of the Afghans who will be temporarily sheltered here,” she said in a brief statement for the media on August 17.

Unofficial sources told DW that “the first contingent will be around 300-350 people. And, within a few days, we expect about 800 more. We do not know yet how things will progress. It’s an ever-evolving situation.”

The humanitarian operation is entirely in the hands of the Americans. In Albania, the host is the Foreign Ministry. Sources say the refugees will arrive via direct — rather than transit — flight from Kabul, adhering to the evacuation protocol in similar humanitarian crisis situations. The first Afghans will be housed initially in six student dormitories in Albania’s capital, Tirana.

The Qyteti Studenti offer a total capacity of about 7,500 beds. With the start of the new academic year, and depending on developments, official sources say the Afghans will be relocated to hotels in the coastal city of Durres, 30 minutes away from Tirana.

Photo: A group of European and Afghan nationals disembark from a French military plane A330 at Roissy CDG airport from Kabul via Abu Dhabi at Roissy, near Paris, France. EPA-EFE/CHRISTOPHE PETIT TESSON

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