‘Turkey not sending troops to secure Kabul airport’

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Turkey has been operating Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport for six years, with some 500 troops in the NATO’s Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan….reports Asian Lite News

Turkey’s Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said that the country will not send additional troops to Afghanistan as part of a plan to secure the Kabul airport since it already has soldiers in the country.

“At the moment, we’re not in any situation to send (new) soldiers. It is out of the question for us to send any soldiers there in any way now,” Akar told reporters at Parliament on Wednesday.

Turkey has been in dialogue with other countries to draw up a plan, he said.

Turkey has been operating Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport for six years, with some 500 troops in the NATO’s Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan.

Ankara has proposed to secure and run the airport after the withdrawal of NATO forces in the war-torn country.

However, the Taliban objects to the proposal, saying they do not want any foreign troops remaining in Afghanistan after the NATO forces leave in September.

A delegation from the US Defence Ministry will visit Turkey on Thursday to discuss logistic and financial support for the NATO mission, according to Akar.

Taliban militants surrender

A total of 130 Taliban militants surrendered to the Afghan government in Herat province on Thursday, a local government spokesperson confirmed.

The former militants surrendered to the personnel of provincial directorate of National Directorate of Security (NDS), the country’s national intelligence agency, spokesperson Jilani Farhad told Xinhua news agency.

They also brought 85 AK-47 guns, five PK guns, five rounds of rocket propelled grenade launchers together with amount of ammunition, he said.

With the former insurgents’ surrender, peace and stability would be further strengthened in Herat, the official said.

The Taliban militant group is yet to comment on the development.

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