Pen Farthing news latest – Taliban stabbed & MACHINE GUNNED dogs, hero reveals as he brings 173 saved animals back to UK

PEN Farthing's rescued dogs are adjusting to life in quarantine after jetting into Heathrow from Afghanistan this weekend.

The ex-Royal Marine yesterday said almost all of his 173 cats and dogs are lined up for loving new homes as he praised the "phenomenal" efforts of troops in getting his animals to Britain.

After landing, he took to Twitter to express his thanks for being evacuated out of Afghanistan.

But in an interview with the Mail he revealed one of his dogs was killed on the road to Kabul Airport after being stabbed at a Taliban checkpoint, and said a pal told him the extremists had shot another dog named Brutas.

Read our Kabul explosion live blog for the latest updates…

  • Joseph Gamp

    GRAPHIC: WHAT COMBAT GEAR HAS THE TALIBAN STOLEN FROM THE US MILITARY?

  • Joseph Gamp

    PEN FARTHING SAYS 'HUMAN MISERY' HE SAW IN KABUL 'WILL TAKE A LONG TIME TO GET OUT OF HIS HEAD'

    The ex marine continued: "I think it'll take a long time to ever get out of my head having to say goodbye to the two members of staff who drove the truck for me to get me into the airport along roads just lined with people.

    "There were thousands and thousands of them in makeshift camps waiting for their turn to try to get into the airport – women, children…"

    He added: "And you should have seen the human misery in that hangar – the possessions people had left behind – photographs, hats, children's toys. 

    "I was sitting amongst all that when someone tweeted about my foul-mouthed rant [to Defence Minister Ben Wallace's special advisor Peter Quentin]."

  • Joseph Gamp

    PEN FARTHING SAYS TALIBAN FIGHTERS SHOT AND KILLED RESCUE DOGS

    Pen told the Mail Online that as he passed through the gates of Kabul Airport, he received a text saying Taliban fighters had shot tow of his friend's dogs.

    The former marine recalled: "It was from my mate Dave who ran a security company in Kabul.

    "He got out literally two hours before me, but kept his compound and left his two pet dogs with the staff.

    "He texted: 'the bastards just shot Brutus. They went round the compound, saw the dogs, dragged them into the open and shot them."

  • Joseph Gamp

    PEN FARTHING DESCRIBES HOW UK SOLDIERS HAD TO GIVE WAY TO TALIBAN

    Pen Farthing has spoken out about his ordeal in Kabul as he attempted to evacuate his charity, Nowzad, and his 173 rescue animals from the Afghan capital.

    "At the airport the British troops are on the inner side of the barbed wire," he explained yesterday in his first full interview since leaving the UK for Norway to be reunited with his new wife, Kaisa, 30, who fled their home in Kabul two weeks ago.

    "You can talk to them but they can't do anything as the Taliban check people at gunpoint. The Afghan people were standing there with all their belongings in a line.

    "There was one guy whose paperwork they didn't like so they're like, 'Come on, out', with an AK rifle in his back.

    "I was just watching this guy trying to wave at his wife and kids as he was being dragged off at gunpoint."

  • Joseph Gamp

    DOMINIC RAAB SAYS UK MADE 'REAL, TANGIBLE GAINS' OVER THE LAST 20 YEARS IN AFGHANISTAN

    The Foreig Secretary this morning saidthe UK had made "real, tangible" gain from 20 years ofmilitary action in Afghanistan.

    Speaking to Sky News, Dominic Raab said: "We have got to look at the gains that we made because of the sacrifice of so many – British forces, US forces and Allied forces.

    "We haven't seen, in that 20 years, Afghanistan used as a base for terrorism abroad. We have with our aid money and our wider development policy got 10 million more children into education – I think by the time we had left four in 10 of those were girls, if you look at the maternal mortality rate – so mums dying in pregnancy or childbirth – that was down by 50 percent.

    "So there were real, tangible gains for all that sacrifice. Of course, now the focus is to recognise the new reality, learn the lessons of course from it but also focus on what we can do going forward."

  • Joseph Gamp

    PICTURED: AFGHAN PARALYMPIAN POSES AT TOKYO GAMES AFTER FLEEING COUNTRY

    Afghan athlete Hossain Rasouli poses before competing in the men's T47 long jump at the Tokyo Paralympics at the National Stadium in Tokyo.

    Rasouli arrived in Tokyo three days before on August 28 after being evacuated from Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.

    Many people are still trapped in the country after evacuations by allied forces winded down.

    Afghan athlete Hossain Rasouli poses before competing in the men's T47 long jump at the Tokyo Paralympics
  • Joseph Gamp

    TOP AL QAEDA ARMS DEALER AND BIN LADEN AIDE RETURNS TO AFGHANISTAN

    Top Al-Qaeda arms supplier Amin ul-Haq, who was also responsible for guarding terror mastermind, was filmed returning to his hometown in the Nangahar province of Afghanistan.

    Ul-Haq managed to escape with bin Laden when the pair were cornered by US forces in the Tora Bora caves, where they fled to after the American-led invasion following 9/11.

    His return to Afghanistan will fuel fears that the Taliban will once again harbour terrorists planning to attack the West as they did prior to the attacks on the US.

    The video shows him waving to admirers from inside a car and at one point it stops and he winds down the window.

    Some bystanders crowd the vehicle’s passenger side, with men taking turns grasping and even kissing his hand.

  • Joseph Gamp

    NUMBER OF UK RESIDENTS STILL IN AFGHANISTAN 'IN THE LOW HUNDREDS' SAYS FOREIGN SEC

    Dominc Raab said the number of UK residents still in Afghanistan is in the "low hundreds".

    The Foreign Secretary told Sky News: "We lament the fact that anyone would be left behind.

    "I would just say that since April when we have been planning and instituting this over 17,000 British nationals, Afghan workers, vulnerable special cases are out. I know that the number of UK nationals – the particular responsibility of the Foreign Office – is now down at a very low level."

    When asked about exact numbers, he replied: "Low hundreds, given that we have taken 5,000 out, and most of those are difficult cases where it is not clear around eligibility because they are undocumented."

    Mr Raab added the Government was now working with countries neighbouring Afghanistan on a "workable route through" for UK nationals to escape.

     

  • Joseph Gamp

    AFGHANS WHO TRY TO FLEE ACROSS BORDERS WILL FACE 'A CHALLENGE', SAYS DOMINIC RAAB

    The Foreign Secretary has said it will be a "challenge" for people trying to escape Afghanistan by fleeing to a border.

    Mr Raab was asked by Sky News what advice the Foreign Office was giving to UK nationals and Afghans who had helped British forces who wanted to escape via one of Afghanistan's neighbouring countries.

    He replied: "That is a challenge, which is why we are holding very squarely the Taliban to their explicit assurances – they have made them bilaterally to us, they have made them to other countries and we have now firmed this up with a UN security council resolution – that they must allow safe passage, not just for our nationals but for Afghans, particularly vulnerable ones, who wish to leave."

  • Joseph Gamp

    FORMER ENGLISH LANGUAGE TEACHER 'REGRETS' WORKING WITH UK MISSION FOR AFTER 'THEY FLED AND LEFT HIM ALONE'

    A former English language teacher stranded in Afghanistan said he "regrets" working with the UK mission in the country because of the grave danger he is in now.

    Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, the unnamed man said: "I regret working with the English. I regret helping people learn English. Why did I work for people who left me and fled and left me alone here? My background is hurting me nowadays.

    "They are looking for me because I've got pictures in billboards advertised for classes. Also, I worked for the British Council. I worked for the UK for the past eight or nine years."

    The teacher tried to flee Afghanistan shortly after the Taliban took over, but found there was no way for him to escape. He applied for the evacuation scheme but had "no reply".

    "Last night was the worst," he concluded. "It was, the whole night, guns while you're sleeping. It damages your mind. My fate will be the same, like others."

  • Joseph Gamp

    DOMINIC RAAB DENIES UK EVACUATION PLAN CONTRIBUTED TO RISK OF TERROR AT KABUL AIRPORT

    Dominic Raab has denied claims the UK's evacuation plan may have contributed to the risk of a terror attack at Kabul airport.

    Dominic Raab said it was "just not true" to suggest the UK called for the airport's Abbey Gate to be left open for part of its exit operation, which then contributed to the attack by Isis-K, the offshoot of the so-called Islamic State.

    He told Sky News: "We co-ordinated very closely with the US, in particular around the Isis-K threat which we anticipated, although tragically were not able to prevent, but it is certainly right to say we got our civilians out of the processing centre by Abbey Gate, but it is just not true to suggest that other than securing our civilians inside the airport that we were pushing to leave the gate open.

    "In fact, and let me just be clear about this, we were issuing changes of travel advice before the bomb attack took place and saying to people in the crowd, about which I was particularly concerned, that certainly UK nationals and anyone else should leave because of the risk."

  • Joseph Gamp

    IDS LABELS CRITICISM OF DOMINIC RAAB AS 'CHILDISH AND PATHETIC'

    Former Conservative leader Sir Iain Duncan Smith has described criticism of Dominic Raab's handling of the withdrawal from Afghanistan as "childish and pathetic".

    Speaking on LBC, Sir Iain said: "A lot of the briefing against Dominic Raab is rather childish and pathetic, during the course of a crisis where you want this thing settled.

    "You don't want to have a debate about whether somebody should be there or not there, as long as they're doing their job and you want them to get on with that job.

  • Joseph Gamp

    DOMINIC RAAB DENIES CLAIMS HE CALLED AFGHANISTAN 'YESTERDAY'S WAR'

    The Foreign Secretary has denied claims in the Sunday Times he did not take regular calls from Afghan and Pakistani ministers during the evacuation from Kabul airport, allegedly because he thought Afghanistan was "yesterday's war".

    Dominic Raab told Sky News: "Anyone that is toddling off to the Sunday Times or any other newspaper at a time of crisis, including the evacuation which has been two weeks running, giving buck-passing briefings either at me or the FCDO is frankly not credible and it is deeply irresponsible.

    "I have spoken, for example to foreign minister Qureshi (of Pakistan) more intensively given the evacuation but we have absolutely been on this, and you can see we have been on this… why? Because we have got 17,000 people out."

    He later told LBC: "I can't tell you my precise call sheet for the last six months."

    But he added he was part of a "team of ministers" and delegated some phone calls to colleagues including Lord Ahmad, saying: "It is right that you have delegation, a division of labour if you are going to operate effectively as a team. Anyone who tells you otherwise has not done a job like this.

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    PEN FARTHING’S RESCUED DOGS START THEIR QUARANTINE AT UK CENTRE AS HE HAILS ‘PHENOMENAL’ TROOPS

    The ex-Royal Marine yesterday said almost all of his 173 cats and dogs are lined up for loving new homes as he praised the “phenomenal” efforts of troops in getting his animals to Britain.

    Photos shared by Lozzas Lurcher Rescue – one of the groups hired to bring the pets to their undisclosed quarantine location – shows a white pooch getting its belly rubbed by a doting staff member.

    The group called the animals their “precious cargo” and praised Pen for “the most amazing rescue mission” while lauding his “sheer guts and determination”.

    Meanwhile, rescue group Wales Ape and Monkey Sanctuary – who transported its own share of hounds – posted a picture of some of their charges being cared for by staff.

    A post on the Lozzas Lurcher Rescue group read: “Wow what an emotional day.

    “My precious cargo that I was in charge of included a retired military dog.

    “Every dog has been really well looked after and Pen has done just the most amazing rescue mission. Each dog totally deserved this chance of a new life.”

  • [email protected]

    NOWZAD CHARITY SAYS ITS THOUGHTS ARE NOW WITH PEN FARTHING’S STAFF IN KABUL

    Confirming the news Mr Farthing and the animals had left Afghanistan, the Nowzad charity said: “The last few days have been extremely difficult and hazardous for Pen and the Nowzad team and we very much appreciate your patience and messages of support as we have strived to get them to safety.

    “We know that Pen will update you as soon as he is able.”

    But it said their “thoughts for now are with our staff and the many people and animals who have also been left behind.

    “We will do our utmost to help them,” the statement added.

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    EX-MARINE EVACUATES ANIMALS FROM KABUL BUT SHELTER STAFF LEFT BEHIND

    A former Royal Marine has succeeded in evacuating to the UK around 170 dogs and cats from an animal shelter in Afghanistan.

    But Paul “Pen” Farthing’s privately funded charter flight, which arrived at London’s Heathrow Airport at about 7.30am on Sunday, was not carrying his 24 staff and dependents from the Nowzad shelter in Kabul.

    Dominic Dyer, an animal welfare campaigner and supporter of Mr Farthing, said the former marine was forced to travel back alone after being told it was not possible to find people to fill the plane’s seats.

    Mr Farthing’s campaign to get workers and animals from the shelter out of Afghanistan has caused controversy in recent days, after receiving a huge amount of public support.

    Mr Dyer said the shelter staff were “still in their homes” with the charity in contact with them, adding that efforts would be made to try to get them out of Afghanistan.

    “They are one of thousands of Afghans… that have a right to leave the country but actually have no safe passage out at the moment,” he said.

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    TOP AL QAEDA ARMS DEALER AND BIN LADEN AIDE RETURNS TO AFGHANISTAN

    Top Al-Qaeda arms supplier Amin ul-Haq, who was also responsible for guarding terror mastermind, was filmed returning to his hometown in the Nangahar province of Afghanistan.

    Ul-Haq managed to escape with bin Laden when the pair were cornered by US forces in the Tora Bora caves, where they fled to after the American-led invasion following 9/11.

    His return to Afghanistan will fuel fears that the Taliban will once again harbour terrorists planning to attack the West as they did prior to the attacks on the US.

    The video shows him waving to admirers from inside a car and at one point it stops and he winds down the window.

    Some bystanders crowd the vehicle's passenger side, with men taking turns grasping and even kissing his hand.

  • [email protected]

    TALIBAN MILITANTS STEAL £62BILLION WORTH OF HELICOPTERS, ARMOURED VEHICLES AND WEAPONS AFTER AFGHANISTAN WITHDRAWAL

    An eye-watering amount of US military inventory is now in the hands of the terror group after they surged across the war-torn nation in a matter of weeks, plundering stocks of weapons and vehicles.

    The Taliban now has access to billions of pounds worth of equipment, including identification devices that could alarmingly help them identify Afghans who helped coalition forces – many of whom remain stranded in Kabul.

    According to US Republican Congressman Jim Banks – who served in Afghanistan as an officer in charge of supplying weapons – the group now has “more Black Hawk helicopters than 85 per cent of the countries in the world”.

    “Due to the negligence of this administration, the Taliban now has access to $85billion (£62billion) worth of military equipment,” he said.

    “Unbelievably, and unfathomable to me and so many others, the Taliban now has access to biometric devices.

    “This administration still has no plan to get this military equipment or supplies back.”

  • [email protected]

    TALIBAN MILITANTS STEAL £62BILLION WORTH OF HELICOPTERS, ARMOURED VEHICLES AND WEAPONS AFTER AFGHANISTAN WITHDRAWAL

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    MUM OF BABY INJURED IN KABUL BOMBING BEGS PM TO HELP REUNITE HER WITH HER TWO CHILDREN

    THE grieving young mum of a baby boy gravely hurt in the Kabul Airport suicide bombing is pleading with PM Boris Johnson to help reunite her with her two children.

    Basbibi Raza, 19, wept as she revealed that Muhammad Raza — two next month — needs a life-saving operation in the next 48 hours.

    The tot was hit by shrapnel in the blast which killed his dad Miraj and grandad Sultan, 48.

    He has already had surgery in Afghanistan where he remains with his five-month-old sister, Kalsoom.

    Basbibi was split from her family moments before Thursday’s attack which killed at least 170, including 13 US troops and three Brits.

    Read more here.

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    JAMES CLEVERLY DEFENDS DOMINIC RAAB (CONTINUED…)

    Asked directly whether Mr Raab was a “control freak”, Mr Cleverly said: “No, that’s not true. It’s not true.”

    On the suggestion Mr Raab was “toast” in the next reshuffle because of his failings, Mr Cleverly told LBC Radio: “Government departments and ministers – including Dominic – worked incredibly hard, we worked together, we were able to get out over 15,000 people in those last couple of weeks, because all bits of Government had a role to play and discharged those roles and those functions incredibly, incredibly, professionally.

    “That includes Dominic, as well. None of us could have done it on our own, we could only do it working collaboratively, that’s what happened.

    “It was a brutal, horrible, incredibly difficult time and yet – as I say – we were able to evacuate over 15,000 people and that is a herculean task.”

  • [email protected]

    JAMES CLEVERLY DEFENDS DOMINIC RAAB OVER AFGHANISTAN COLLAPSE

    A Foreign Office minister has defended the organisation’s response to the crisis in Afghanistan amid allegations that Dominic Raab is a “control freak” who faces the sack.

    James Cleverly insisted the allegations about the Foreign Secretary’s style of leadership were “not true” and insisted the organisation had responded swiftly to the unprecedented events in Afghanistan.

    Mr Raab has faced criticism for being on holiday in Crete as the Taliban swept across Afghanistan.

    In the latest sign of the Whitehall infighting, one Government source told The Times: “I think he is toast in the next reshuffle”, and the Foreign Office “is a poorly-led organisation with a control freak in charge who won’t delegate anything”.

    But Mr Cleverly told Times Radio: “I don’t know where that’s where that’s coming from. The organisation that I see really sprang quickly into an activity that was at a scale and nature that was unprecedented.”

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    ‘EMBARRASSED’ EX-MARINE APOLOGISES OVER EXPLETIVE-LADEN MESSAGE FOR AIDE

    A former Royal Marine has admitted his emotions “got the better” of him when he left an expletive-laden message for a Government aide while trying to evacuate around 170 dogs and cats from an animal shelter in Afghanistan to the UK.

    Paul “Pen” Farthing arrived at London’s Heathrow Airport in a privately funded charter flight at about 7.30am on Sunday, following his Operation Ark campaign to get workers and animals from the Nowzad shelter in Kabul out of the country.

    A recording, obtained by The Times, captured Mr Farthing berating Peter Quentin, a special adviser to Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, earlier in the week, accusing him of “blocking” efforts to arrange the evacuation flight.

    On Monday, Mr Farthing told ITV’s Good Morning Britain: “I’m incredibly embarrassed about my language, I do apologise to everybody who’s listened to that.

    “I was at the lowest point I could possibly be. I understand how the world works but emotions got the better of me, so for all those who had to listen to that I do apologise for my language. I should not have said it like that, but the sentiment, yes, I was just incredibly upset, angry, frustrated, it was the lowest point. I had no other option, I didn’t know what else to do.

    “So that’s why you’ve probably heard some colourful language.”

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    BORIS JOHNSON TELLS SOLDIERS FAMILIES: ‘YOUR SUFFERING WAS NOT IN VAIN’

    Addressing the families and loved ones of the British troops who “gave their all”, Mr Johnson said: “Your suffering and your hardship were not in vain.”

    He added: “It was no accident that there’s been no terrorist attack launched against Britain or any other western country from Afghanistan in the last 20 years.

    “It was thanks to the bravery of our Armed Forces who fought to knock out (Osama) Bin Laden’s networks.

    “And, thanks to the devotion of British troops and aid workers and diplomats and others, we’ve helped educate 3.6 million girls.

    “Whatever the future may hold for Afghanistan, they will have that gift for the rest of their lives, a gift they will pass on to their daughters as well as their sons.”

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    PEN FARTHING ARRIVES SAFELY AT LONDON HEATHROW AFTER KABUL EVACUATION

    PEN Farthing has landed safely in London Heathrow with his 173 dogs and cats after his heartbreak at leaving devoted staff behind.

    The ex-Royal Marine is understood to be immediately boarding a connecting flight to Norway to visit his wife Kaisa Markhus.

    Nearly 200 animals he was travelling with from Kabul will reportedly now have to quarantine under UK law.

    His charted jet stopped at Muscat after leaving war-torn Afghanistan before arriving in London today.

    Pen’s pet charity Nowzad confirmed last night that the former Royal Marine was “safely” out of Kabul, along with the rescued animals.

    Read more here.

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