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Netherlands

19 Dutch nationals evacuated from Niger on Wednesday, embassy closed to public

19 Dutch nationals who were in Niger left the African country on Wednesday via multiple flights. On Wednesday evening, outgoing Foreign Minister Wopke Hoekstra announced that 13 Dutch nationals had left Niger. Earlier in the day, six other Dutch citizens had already managed to leave the country. For security reasons, the Dutch embassy in the capital Niamey has been closed to public.

The initial group of six Dutch nationals left Niger with the help of international partners on various flights. The other 13 Dutch nationals evacuated on Wednesday evening are en route to Paris on a French flight, where they will be met by staff from the Dutch embassy.

“We are in close contact with our international partners about the worrying situation in Niger. We are especially grateful to France for the assistance they have provided with the departure of our compatriots and colleagues. A good example of international cooperation,” wrote Wopke Hoekstra in a post on X, the social platform formerly known as Twitter.

According to Hoekstra, nearly all Dutch nationals who wanted to leave Niger have now done so. A few Dutch citizens could not reach the airport in time, he said. The Dutch embassy in the capital, Niamey, is maintaining contact with them. Despite the security situation in Niger leading to the embassy’s closure, the ambassador remains with a small team in Niamey to represent the Netherlands.

The exact number of Dutch nationals still in Niger remains unclear, as there is no registration obligation for Dutch nationals abroad. However, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs previously reported that around 25 Dutch nationals in Niger had contacted the department.

A week ago, a coup occurred in Niger, where the military seized power. Since then, French and Italian evacuation flights have left the country, carrying individuals from Ethiopia, Belgium, France, Portugal, and Italy, among others.

French authorities reported on Wednesday evening that a third evacuation flight had arrived in Paris. The first three flights carried 736 people, including 498 French nationals. Whether any of the six Dutch nationals were on the third French flight could not be confirmed on Wednesday evening.



https://nltimes.nl/2023/08/02/19-dutch-nationals-evacuated-niger-wednesday-embassy-closed-public 19 Dutch nationals evacuated from Niger on Wednesday, embassy closed to public

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