Turkey and Qatar, the new alliance with the Taliban passes from Kabul airport
After Syria and Libya, Turkey and Qatar plunge into Afghanistan. The Kabul takeover by the Taliban has recently re-emerged doubts similar to those in Iraq following the Mosul capture by Daesh in 2014. How will a jihadist militia formed exclusively by guerrillas and aides govern and administer a country, manage its finances, and direct its growth? The terrible attack on the Kabul airport, claimed by the branch of Isis in the Khorasan (Isis-k), in which at least 200 people died, raised another question. Who can guarantee the public safety of the country’s main airport within a group that today has taken power but is only used to guerrilla warfare?
“The Taliban say they can secure the area, but they don’t have any team specializing in this. They only have fighters carrying a rifle, “confided a Turkish official to the Middle East Eye in the aftermath of the airport tragedy. The quote from a Turkish official is not accidental: in the same hours as this statement, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced the withdrawal completion of Turkish troops from Afghanistan, as requested by the Taliban themselves. Furthermore, es. Erdogan made it known that in a three and a half-hour meeting with the Taliban counterpart at the Turkish embassy in Kabul, an agreement was solicited on the Turkish presence at the airport to manage security. Thus, the Turkish requests regarding the need for their airport presence emerged “strengthened” from the attack.
An agreement that apparently would not have been reached, leaving the Turkish president perplexed by the Taliban proposal to manage the “security” of Hamid Karzai airport by contracting out “airport logistics” in Ankara. For the Taliban, the withdrawal of any foreign troops does not seem negotiable. Still, at the same time, it is difficult to imagine complete management of airport security without the contribution of military technicians. “We will decide once that calm prevails – added Erdogan – when the Afghan government takes shape.”
Two other Turkish officials told Reuters that Ankara would not agree to manage airport security if it is not allowed to keep military personnel on-site. The Taliban’s security plans include lookout towers around the airport, “Would not be sufficient to protect the Turkish staff in charge of providing logistics.” Qatar seems to have entered this deadlock, which is, moreover, for reasons of geostrategic advantage, a de facto ally of Turkey, and in whose capital Doha since 2010 has hosted the base of the Taliban leaders. According to Reuters, Koranic students also turned to Doha for the non-military management of Kabul airport. That is a development under observation, especially in light of the evolution of regional alliances.