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Afghanistan withdrawal is ‘biggest NATO debacle since founding’: Merkel party chief

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The withdrawal from Afghanistan is the biggest NATO debacle since its founding, according to the leader of German chancellor Angela Merkel’s party.

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Germany’s military needs a strong mandate to carry out an evacuation operation in Afghanistan, Armin Laschet, the conservative candidate to succeed Angela Merkel as chancellor added.

Laschet said the mission was “one of the more dangerous” the Bundeswehr armed forces have had to undertake and called the situation in the Afghan capital following its rapid fall to the Taliban “completely unclear”.

“That’s why we need a strong mandate,” Laschet told reporters. He urged parliament to back the mandate that the government is expected to adopt on Wednesday.

Merkel told party colleagues earlier that Germany must evacuate up to 10,000 people - including local support staff for its discontinued military presence, rights activists, lawyers and others at risk.

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