New whistleblower says Boris Johnson put animals before humans in Afghanistan evacuation

Josie Stewart – a senior official at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) – has said it was “widespread knowledge” that the decision to help the Nowzad charity evacuate cats and dogs from Afghanistan “came from the prime minister”.

She said emails in her inbox referred to “the PM’s decision on Nowzad”.

This supports claims made in two Foreign Office emails that were released to the public in January.

As I wrote back then:

“One lobbies for the rescue of a second animal charity because Johnson had agreed to evacuate Nowzad: “The PM has just authorised their staff and animals to be evacuated.”

“The second, between FO officials, states: “In light of the PM’s decision earlier today [August 25, 2021] to evacuate the staff of the Nowzad animal charity, the [other animal charity – name redacted] is asking for agreement to the entry of [details redacted] staff, all Afghan nationals.”

“The issue is controversial because human beings were left behind. Some have since travelled out of Afghanistan and tried to gain entry into the country.

“Damningly for the UK’s Tory government, some have died in the attempt.”

Ms Stewart accused Sir Philip Barton, the Foreign Office’s permanent undersecretary, and Nigel Casey, the PM’s special representative for Afghanistan, of having “intentionally lied” to MPs on the foreign affairs select committee.

Appearing before the committee on January 25, Casey was asked if he knew whether the PM had intervened “in the evacuation of Nowzad staff or animals” and replied: “Not to my knowledge.”

In  written evidence to the committee, published the next day, Sir Philip denied that Mr Casey had received “any correspondence referring to the prime minister’s intervention in the Nowzad case”.

This was contradicted in leaked emails published by the committee subsequently.

Sir Philip had to write back to the committee, apologising for misleading its members.

But he insisted that he had no memory of the emails, and nor did Casey.

Johnson has denied direct involvement in the evacuation of animals.

But the email evidence suggests that, indeed, he ordered it – and then lied to the media afterwards, when it was suggested that he had prioritised animals over human beings.

Ms Stewart also dismissed government claims that civil servants often portrayed decisions as coming from the PM if they did not, saying, “Governance would fall apart entirely if this were the case.”

She said: “I feel a strong sense of moral injury for having been part of something so badly managed and so focused on managing reputational risk and political fallout rather than the actual crisis and associated human tragedy.”

Ms Stewart said the messages about the animal evacuation decision were coming from the PM on Microsoft Teams, and “heard it discussed in the crisis centre including by senior civil servants”.

She also said she was copied on numerous emails “which clearly suggested this” which no-one, including Mr Casey, challenged.

Ms Stewart said she did not believe there was any deliberate decision “to prioritise animals over people” but that “the decision to approve Nowzad’s Afghan staff under LOTR (leave outside the rules) was not in line with policy”.

The whistleblower said “there was no reason to believe these people should be prioritised under the agreed criteria”.

The Foreign Office has claimed that “at all times officials have responded to the committee’s questions in good faith, on the basis of the evidence available to us at the time”, which is not quite a rejection of the evidence.

There is plenty of evidence to question that protestation of good faith.

Source: Boris Johnson ordered evacuation of animals from Afghanistan, says new whistleblower | The Independent

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.

The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:



  1. Hecuba March 22, 2022 at 10:53 am - Reply

    Little duck fascist dictator duck johnson ‘did not put animals before humans!’ More lies from so-called whistle blowers because in fact if fascist dictator duck johnson did anything it was to demand Ben Wallace provide the necessary codes so that a chartered plane – yes a chartered plane not a government one be allowed to land in Kabul!!! Arrogant Wallace refused to authorise the codes because he didn’t want ‘those animals to be evacuated’ and in fact he didn’t even want Afghan refugees to leave Kabul!

    Blame Wallace not duck johnson in this instance – but stupid arrogant duck johnson continues to be too cowardly to publicly say ‘yes I did authorise assistance to Nowzad but it was merely demanding Wallace provide the codes!’

    This chartered plane would then have enabled Nowzad to put their animals into the cargo hold and they would have requested the fascist tory government to allow Afghan refugees board plane and sit yes SIT IN THE PASSENGER SEATS! But the fascist tories didn’t want any ‘nasty refugees’ to leave Kabul.

    Real accountability lies with the Foreign Office lackeys who at the time of the Kabul evacuation had arrogant Dominic Raab as their Foreign Secretary but he was unavailable to oversee the non evacuation because he was sunning himself on Cyprus!

    So reason why so many Afghan women. children and men were deliberately not evacuated from Kabul is due to fascist tory xenophobic and racist policies. The utter incompetence and lack of organisation is all due to Dominic Raab and his useless Foreign Office lackeys. Don’t blame Nowzad blame the fascist tories!

  2. jake March 22, 2022 at 12:04 pm - Reply

    I’ve always preferred other animals to other humans.

  3. Jeff Piper March 22, 2022 at 1:09 pm - Reply

    Operation Ark was never just about getting the animals out. It was the Nowzad staff and animals in a chartered plane. All turned up at the airport but the afghan staff were turned away because of changes made by the US to paperwork. Pen Farthing had also offered over 100 seats on the plane to the UK government but delays by the MOD meant they were never taken up. In the end Pen was the last to fly out with the cats and dog in the hold. The government squandered an opportunity to bring veterinary staff here to help fill a shortage in that area. Operation Ark concluded when all the staff got out of the country.

    • Mike Sivier March 22, 2022 at 3:15 pm - Reply

      Whichever way you look at it, the UK government made a mess of this.

Leave A Comment