Afghan on 'no-fly watchlist' flown into UK during evacuation mission

AN AFGHAN on a "no-fly watchlist" was flown into the UK during an evacuation mission.

Officials were alerted "overnight" after the unnamed person landed in a British military plane, says a report.

The individual, who is not being identified by the government, was flown into Birmingham as part of the British evacuation operation in a potential security breach, says Sky News.

The "no-fly watchlist" is designed to block people who are considered a security threat from reaching the UK.

The government will not say if the person has since been detained.

But, if they pose a threat, the government will not now be able to return them to Afghanistan after Britain suspended flights.

The news of the case emerged at a briefing for MPs by ministers and officials on Monday.

Opposition MPs worry this is a security breach, although government sources say that the fact the person has been identified shows the watchlist is working.

They also stress that people can be flagged on the "no-fly" list for a wide variety of reasons.

The no-fly scheme was introduced in 2012 to prevent people who pose a terrorist threat from travelling to the UK.

The potential security breach comes as British officials at the airport in Kabul are warning of a spike in impersonations, forged documents and forged passports.

There are people trying to take advantage of this process to get into the UK to cause us harm.

And, the armed forces minister warned today of the risk that terrorists could hide among genuine refugees by trying to sneak on evacuation flights from Afghanistan to Britain to commit attacks.

James Heappey said evil extremists plotting to "cause us harm" were exploiting the chaos in Kabul – where troops are on high alert for an ISIS suicide bomber.

Security checks means UK officials at the airport are unable to process evacuees at breakneck speed.

Mr Heappey told BBC Radio 4: "We would love to be able to just open the gates and let people in at an even faster flow but there are people right now trying to get on some British flights that we have identified in our checks as being on the UK's no-fly list.

"So the checks that are being done are entirely necessary, because there are people trying to take advantage of this process to get into the UK to cause us harm."


Soldiers helping with the rescue mission in the Afghan capital are also on constant watch for Islamist threats.

Over the past 24 hours 1,821 people have been evacuated on eight British military jets, with a further nine flights planned for the next 24 hours.

British officials are racing to rescue people before August 31 when the US has agreed to pull back entirely.

About 4,000 British and Afghan nationals are hoped to be airlifted before the cut-off.

The UK faces an “immediate” danger of a terror attack on the same scale as 9/11 after the Taliban gained control of Afghanistan, security experts have warned.

The radical Islamists last week declared their victory a "proud moment for the nation" – but it’s not just Afghans who should be worried, according to British intelligence.

Colonel Richard Kemp, former commander of British forces in Afghanistan said: “There is the possibility of a 9/11 style spectacular, on government buildings, sports grounds, major targets.”

He added: “If they cannot get the US, the UK remains a large target. 

“Freedom in Afghanistan, as we have seen with 9/11, will give them time and help to plan such an attack.”

The leader of the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan Ahmad Masood warned: “The Taliban is not a problem for the Afghan people alone.

"Plots against democracies will be hatched here once again.”

During the brutal years of Taliban rule in the 1990s and early 2000s terror networks notoriously used Afghanistan as a base to plot attacks.

Osama Bin Laden's Al Qaeda masterminded the 9/11 attacks from the country – prompting the initial Western invasion. 

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