Foreign secretary Dominic Raab is facing criticism after it was reported that he refused to make a phone call to help Afghan translators while he was on holiday.

The Daily Mail reports that Raab was advised to personally ask his Afghan counterpart Hanif Atmar for urgent support to get interpreters who had worked for the Britishmilitary out of the country last week.

He was told that his US counterparts had made similar calls, however, he delegated the responsibility to a junior minister instead, the publication understands, as Raab prioritised other calls.

Raab has already faced criticism for being on holiday in Crete while Kabul fell to Taliban forces last week. Raab said that while he was away he had been directing his team and engaging with international partners.

But during a five-hour parliamentary debate yesterday Keir Starmer accused Mr Raab of staying “on holiday while our mission in Afghanistan was disintegrating”.

“You cannot co-ordinate an international response from the beach,” he said.

Now, following the Mail’s revelations, Raab has faced fresh criticism.

Keir Starmer questioned:

Shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy said he “should be ashamed”:

Other politicians also slammed the minister:

But Defence Secretary Ben Wallace defended Raab this morning. Speaking to Sky News, he said Raab “has managed to do all his calls when he needed to”.

“I, like you, have read the front of the newspaper today and I have absolutely no idea about what my foreign secretary or anyone else’s secretary’s call sheet is like.

“What I do know is that at no stage in the last few weeks have I had a problem with the foreign secretary or anyone else in that department in making sure we should process, get people through.

“The facts are changing rapidly on the ground and, as he said yesterday in Parliament, he has managed to do all his calls when he needed to, his COBRA calls etcetera.”

Pressed again on the matter, Wallace added: “One phone call is not the reason we are where we are at the moment - and I don’t even know if that phone call did or didn’t happen because all they have is a media speculative front page about it.”

indy100 has contacted the foreign office for comment.

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