Germany ends Sudan evacuations, 700 people flown out; Evacuated Turks arrive in Istanbul

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BERLIN, April 25 (Reuters) – Germany has ended its operation to evacuate people from Sudan, with over 700 people flown out of the country, including around 200 German citizens, the German defence ministry said on Twitter on Wednesday.

The first Turkish civilians evacuated from Sudan returned to Turkey on Wednesday, with more than 100 people arriving by plane at Istanbul Airport, Reuters footage showed.

The Turks came from the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, where they had arrived overland from the Sudanese capital Khartoum.

Several more flights were expected later on Wednesday to evacuate the remaining Turkish citizens crossing to Ethiopia from Sudan.

Britain has evacuated 301 people from conflict-ridden Sudan and the aim is to reach a total of eight British evacuation flights by the end of Wednesday, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s spokesman said.

Sunak told lawmakers that a large-scale evacuation of British nationals was underway to help Britons stranded in the North African country.

His spokesman said that four flights had departed Sudan and another was being loaded as of 1200 GMT, and that Britain aimed to continue evacuation flights over the coming days.

“Four flights have now departed, carrying 301 people,” the spokesman told reporters, adding four further flights were expected over the course of Wednesday.

“We intend to keep running the evacuation flights… It is a fast moving situation and it is something kept under close review bearing in mind there is a time-limited ceasefire.”

A passenger plane belonging to Britain’s Royal Air Force with about 40 civilians on board landed on the island of Cyprus on Tuesday, a spokesperson for Cyprus’s foreign ministry said late evening.

The spokesman said that subsequent flights had been full or close to full. While the majority of people on the flights were British nationals, the spokesman gave no breakdown of the nationalities on board, saying other nationalities might have been offered seats on a flight-by-flight basis.

Britain began a large-scale evacuation of its citizens on Tuesday, following other nations in pulling people out of Sudan where violent clashes between the army and a paramilitary group called Rapid Support Forces (RSF) have killed hundreds of people and stranded foreigners.

The government has estimated that around 4,000 Britons were stuck in Sudan.

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