Afghanistan

Op Pitting 'sad end' to Afghanistan campaign, Defence Secretary says

The Defence Secretary has said the UK should be "proud" of the military for their role in the evacuation of Afghanistan, but added "it has left a mark by us all leaving".

Ben Wallace told Forces News the Armed Forces "behaved amazingly" faced with the challenge when deployed on Operation Pitting, the British military operation to evacuate British nationals and eligible Afghans from Kabul, one year ago.

"They went into a very hostile environment, an uncertain environment and, alongside the United States, carried out one of the biggest evacuations for [decades]," he said.

Watch: The dogs of Op Pitting – one year on.

"We should be proud of how they performed, and soldiers from 16 Air Assault Brigade were flown in, not knowing necessarily what they were going to meet, and they had to deal with a big humanitarian crisis as well as a threat.

"I think they conducted themselves with the highest professionalism and we should definitely be proud of that."

However, Mr Wallace added that Operation Pitting was "a sad end to Afghanistan and that campaign".

"There was some good that was done but I also think it has left a mark by us all leaving," he said.