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Pen Farthing blames Joe Biden after his animals were turned away at Kabul airport

Farthing said his mission to get 200 dogs and cats out alongside his staff had been blocked by US policy
Pen Farthing has blamed Joe Biden for his animals not being allowed to leave Afghanistan (Instagram/@penfarthing)
Pen Farthing has blamed Joe Biden for his animals not being allowed to leave Afghanistan (Instagram/@penfarthing)

Paul ‘Pen’ Farthing, a Royal Marine veteran who had earlier made an impassioned plea to the British government to help the local staff at his animal sanctuary in Afghanistan leave the war-torn country, said on August 26 that he went "through hell" to reach Kabul airport only to be turned away due to a change in paperwork rules. And he blamed US President Joe Biden for it.

Taking to Twitter, Farthing wrote, “The whole team & dogs/cats were safely 300m inside the airport perimeter. We were turned away as @JoeBiden @POTUS had changed paperwork rules just 2 hours earlier. Went through hell to get there & we were turned away into the chaos of those devastating explosions. #OperationArk.”


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The UK has reportedly entered the final stages of its Kabul evacuation and no more people will be called to the airport to leave, the Ministry of Defence said on Thursday. "It is with deep regret that not everyone has been able to be evacuated during this process," Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said. The Ministry of Defence also said that the processing facilities at the Baron Hotel, outside the airport in Kabul, had been closed. The US, which is running the airport, is withdrawing its troops by August 31. It comes after two explosions hit Kabul airport on Thursday, killing some 90 people - among them 13 US military personnel. At least 150 people were also wounded in the attack. 

Speaking to the BBC, Farthing said his mission to get 200 dogs and cats out alongside his staff had been blocked by US policy. He also described the chaotic scenes at the airport. "All hell broke loose at the airport circle which is where I was, which is probably about a mile from the explosions across at the Abbey Gate and we had Taliban there firing into the air," Farthing said. 


"One let off a full magazine on automatic from his AK-47 right next to the window of our bus where we had women and children in,” he continued. "And as we were trying to then flee from the airport we were getting tear-gassed so we were obviously trying to drive the vehicle when we can't see anything. It was just the most horrific thing."

Farthing, who hails from Dovercourt in Essex, a county in southeast England, told the BBC that Biden had "stopped" his attempt to get the animals out of the country. "There's nothing I can do. The staff are telling me it's time for me to go. They don't think a foreigner will be welcome here," he said. "Staff have asked me to take as many dogs and cats as I can. But now I can't get them past the Taliban check points."

Many online supported Farthing in his criticism of Biden. Even those who voted for or supported Biden in the elections. “We all had such hope for you @JoeBiden @POTUS but you've absolutely let the world down and destroyed a country in the process. @BorisJohnson @BWallaceMP you will be remembered for your lack of leadership and procrastination. @Nowzad and @PenFarthing are absolute heroes,” wrote one person on Twitter. Another person wrote, “Ashamed of @JoeBiden @POTUS This is absolutely disgusting. Where is the compassionate President we elected?”

One person tweeted, “They were in the airport @JoeBiden and they weren’t allowed to get on a plane that was ready for them. I’m gutted for @PenFarthing the rest of his staff and the dogs and cats who had a change at freedom and now might not get it… prayers and thoughts don’t seem enough right now.” Another person wrote, “@JoeBiden how can this happen. @Nowzad has gone through so much. They were ready to board, their plane was there ready and they are turned away?!  Please get them through ASAP.”