Kabul urges Central Asian neighbors to return aircraft

KABUL (TOLOnews): The Ministry of Defense (MoD) reiterated its call to Central Asian neighbors Tajikistan and Uzbekistan to return Afghan aircraft that were flown out by former Afghan military personnel during the collapse of the republica government.
The MoD spokesman Enayatullah Khwarizmi, said that the aircraft are the property of the people of Afghanistan.
“Uzbekistan or Tajikistan are our neighboring countries. We want good relations with them and we call on them to return these (aircrafts) to us for the sake of neighborly and diplomatic manners. and we will reclaim them whenever it is possible,” Khwarizmi said.
In April 2022, the VOA reported from US defense officials that both Uzbekistan and Tajikistan had no plans to give the aircraft to the Islamic Emirate.
“The aircraft continue to be the subject of regional security engagement with the governments of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan,” a US Defense Department spokesperson, Army Major Rob Lodewick, said when asked about the fate of the planes and helicopters, a VOA report said.
However, reports were leaked to the media then that the US was secretly negotiating about the return of the aircraft from Uzbekistan and Tajikistan to Afghanistan.
Military analysts said that the interim Afghan government should engage with the US officials about the return of the aircrafts to Afghanistan.
“If the Taliban government wants to have this military equipment and helicopters back, it is better that it engages in negotiation with Americans. There is no other side but the Americans in this key issue,” said Asadullah Nadim, a military veteran.
“The light and heavy weapons and helicopters of Afghanistan which were taken to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan belong to the National Afghan Defense Forces… and should return. But these countries are not taking actions to conform to the Americans,” said Zalmai Afghanyar, a military analyst. Based on unconfirmed reports, nearly 60 aircraft were flown by former Afghan forces to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.