Turkey Says Private Companies May Secure Kabul’s Airport
(Bloomberg) -- Private security companies might be used to guard Kabul’s airport and enable the resumption of commercial flights, Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Thursday.
“There is a need to establish security in a way to satisfy everyone. It does not have to be done by a state, military or special police forces. There are companies which specialize in this business,” Cavusoglu said at a joint Ankara press conference with Dutch Foreign Minister Sigrid Kaag.
He said that foreign nationals remaining in Taliban-run Afghanistan could be evacuated on military flights from Hamid Karzai International Airport before commercial services begin again.
Turkey and Qatar have said they are ready to help operate the airport but the minister said others would have to get involved.
“It is an issue that can’t be handled by Turkey and Qatar alone,” Cavusoglu said. “In the first phase, military flights may be used to evacuate citizens of different countries after clearing runways and testing the situation on the ground.”
Turning to the issue of refugees leaving Afghanistan, Cavusoglu said the European Union shouldn’t assume it can sidestep the problem by providing financial support to Turkey.
“There can be no cooperation if they think we’re giving you money so keep the Afghans in your country,” he said, adding that the Turkish government has no plan to allow Afghan refugees to wait in Turkey on their way to another country.
Under a 2016 agreement, the EU paid Turkey billions of dollars to host Syrians fleeing their country’s war and looking to settle in Europe.
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