ROME (Reuters) – The Italian government expects its last evacuation flight to leave Afghanistan later on Friday, Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio told reporters.
“In the next few hours the last C-130 plane will depart from Kabul airport,” Di Maio said after meeting Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Rome.
Italian military planes have taken over 4,800 Afghans out of the country as of Aug. 26, including more than 1,100 children, the defense ministry has said.
Di Maio said the flight will include Italian military staff and diplomats who coordinated evacuation efforts on the ground in Kabul after the Taliban seized control of the country.
He reiterated that Italy, which this year holds the rotating presidency of the Group of 20 major economies (G20), was looking to hold an emergency summit on Afghanistan.
A diplomatic source said the one day event would likely be held before Sept. 20, with officials still working on an agenda. Further details are expected to be given next week.
Di Maio said Russia, which is a G20 member, was a key partner in dealing with the Afghan crisis and vital to building a unified international approach to the country.
(Reporting by Angelo Amante; Editing by Crispian Balmer)