August 19, 2021

Afghanistan: Exiled President Speaks from UAE

Days after the Taliban took control over Afghanistan’s capital city, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has revealed that it is sheltering Afghani president, Ashraf Ghani.

On Sunday, 15 August, Ghani fled the country after the Taliban – an Islamic fundamentalist outfit linked with terrorism, which had previously ruled from 1996 to 2001 – advanced upon Kabul and effectively seized power.

The 72-year-old president’s whereabouts remained unknown following his flight, which was highly criticised by other Afghani politicians. On Wednesday, 18 August, the UAE’s government confirmed in a statement that they were sheltering him on humanitarian grounds.

Later in the day, Ghani himself spoke during a Facebook livestream, in which he denied fleeing with large sums of money, and instead left with “just a waistcoat and some clothes.”

He said: “Kabul should not be turned into another Yemen or Syria over power struggles so I was forced to leave [on government officials’ advice].”

The president added: “I support the government initiative of ongoing negotiations with Abdullah Abdullah and former president Hamid Karzai … I am in consultation for my return to Afghanistan so that I can continue efforts for justice, true Islamic and national values.”

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