Kabul airport reopens to received aid, civilian flights to start soon: Qatar

Kabul airport reopens to received aid, civilian flights to start soon: Qatar
Fecha de publicación: 
4 September 2021
Imagen principal: 

Qatar’s ambassador to Afghanistan said a technical team was able to reopen the Kabul airport to receive aid and that civilian flights will operate from the airport soon, according to Al-Jazeera on Saturday. The team flew into Afghanistan’s capital on Wednesday, making their aircraft the first to land since the evacuations ended earlier this week.

According to Al-Jazeera, the ambassador said the runway at the airport has been repaired in cooperation with authorities in Afghanistan. Al-Jazeera also reported that two domestic flights operated from Kabul to the cities of Mazar-i-Sharif and Kandahar. Qatar’s foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani said on Thursday that his government is talking to the Taliban and working with Turkey for potential technical support to restart operations at the airport.

After the recent takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban, the Kabul airport witnessed chaotic evacuations by several countries and a devastating attack on August 26 which left 13 United States military personnel and more than 160 Afghans dead.

Last week, the United States forces carried out a drone strike that blew up a vehicle carrying suicide bombers of the Islamic State affiliate in Afghanistan. The vehicle was aiming to attack the Kabul airport. And on Monday, five rockets were fired at the airport which was intercepted by a missile defence system, a US official said.

The airport had been out of operations after the US withdrew all its troops from Afghanistan on August 31 (Tuesday). A person told AFP on condition of anonymity on Thursday that the objective of reopening the airport was to resume flights both for humanitarian aid and to provide freedom of movement, including the resumption of evacuation efforts.

Tens of thousands of people have been evacuated from Afghanistan till now even as more are trying to flee from the war-ravaged country, which is now under the Taliban’s rule. The Taliban had earlier promised safe passage for those who were willing to leave Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, the Taliban have again postponed the formation of a new government in Afghanistan, with the group’s spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahid saying on Saturday that the announcement about the new cabinet will be made next week.

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