Report Wire - UAE, Qatar interact in tussle over dealing with of Kabul airport in Taliban-ruled Afghanistan

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UAE, Qatar interact in tussle over dealing with of Kabul airport in Taliban-ruled Afghanistan

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UAE, Qatar engage in tussle over handling of Kabul airport in Taliban-ruled Afghanistan

The United Arab Emirates has held talks with the Taliban to run Kabul airport, going up towards Gulf rival Qatar in a diplomatic tussle for affect with Afghanistan’s new rulers, in response to 4 sources with data of the matter.

UAE officers have held a sequence of discussions with the group in current weeks to debate working the airport that serves as landlocked Afghanistan’s most important air hyperlink to the world, the international diplomats primarily based within the Gulf area advised Reuters.The talks reveal how international locations are searching for to claim their affect in Taliban-ruled Afghanistan even because the hardline Islamist group largely stays a global pariah and its authorities not formally recognised by any nation.READ: We can starve, however the children cry for meals: Afghans wrestle after a 100 days of Taliban ruleThe Emiratis are eager to counter diplomatic clout loved there by Qatar, in response to the sources who declined to be title because of the sensitivity of the matter.The Qataris have been serving to run the Hamid Karzai International Airport together with Turkey after enjoying a serious position in evacuation efforts following the chaotic U.S. withdrawal in August, and have stated they’re keen to take over the operations.Yet the Taliban has not but formalised an association with Qatar, the 4 diplomats stated. File photograph of Taliban fighters outdoors Kabul airport | APA senior Emirati international ministry official stated the UAE, which beforehand ran Kabul airport through the U.S.-backed Afghan republic, “remains committed to continuing to assist in operating” it to make sure humanitarian entry and protected passage.Abu Dhabi additionally aided current evacuation efforts.The Taliban and Qatari authorities didn’t reply to requests for remark.Two of the diplomats stated the Taliban has additionally sought monetary help from the UAE, although they added it was not clear if this was associated to the airport discussions.The Emirati international ministry official, Salem Al Zaabi, director of worldwide safety cooperation, didn’t reply to a query on whether or not the UAE was contemplating offering monetary assist to the Taliban.AIRPORT INTELLIGENCEOne key concern that is nonetheless to be resolved between the Taliban and potential airport operators is who would supply safety on the website, the 4 diplomats stated. The Taliban say they don’t need international forces within the nation following their return to energy after 20 years of warfare.Still, Qatari particular forces are presently offering safety inside the airport’s perimeter, the diplomats added, whereas Taliban particular forces have been patrolling areas outdoors.READ: Kabul airport: The final hope of freedom after Taliban takeover in AfghanistanThus far international locations have been reluctant to formally recognise the Taliban’s authorities, accusing the group of backtracking on pledges to uphold the rights of girls and minorities.Yet Qatari officers have urged higher worldwide engagement with the Taliban to forestall impoverished Afghanistan from falling right into a humanitarian disaster. Gulf states have additionally voiced concern that the U.S. withdrawal would permit al Qaeda to regain a foothold in Afghanistan.While there’s little industrial profit for any operator, the airport would supply a much-needed supply of intelligence on actions in and overseas, in response to the 4 diplomats, who stated that for the reason that withdrawal many international locations have lacked real-time info.REGIONAL RIVALRIESQatar and the UAE have had strained relations for years as they competed for regional affect.The UAE, Saudi Arabia and their allies boycotted Qatar for over three years, chopping off political, commerce and transport ties, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism – a cost that it denies. The dispute was resolved in January this yr.Qatar has lengthy been the gateway to the Taliban, with Doha internet hosting the group’s political workplace since 2013 and negotiations with the U.S. in early 2020 that led to the withdrawal. File photograph of a US army plane parked on tarmac of Kabul airport | APLast week, Qatari officers strengthened their place by signing an accord to signify American diplomatic pursuits in Afghanistan.The UAE has maintained ties with the Taliban too, in response to two of the diplomats. They stated the nation had been dwelling to some members of the group in recent times, together with Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, who they added lived within the Sharjah emirate along with his household from a minimum of 2013. Stanikzai is now deputy international minister within the Taliban administration.Al Zaabi didn’t reply to questions on the UAE’s relationship with Stanikzai. The Taliban didn’t instantly reply to queries on Stanikzai dwelling within the UAE.The Taliban stated this month that the UAE had reopened its embassy in Kabul. The UAE has not commented.