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Former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani (File Photo)
Former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani (File Photo)

Former Afghan President Ghani says he had no idea that he was leaving Afghanistan

ANI | Updated: Dec 30, 2021 22:22 IST

Kabul [Afghanistan], December 30 (ANI): Former President Ashraf Ghani on Thursday said that only after taking off from Afghanistan did he learn that he was headed outside the country.
Describing the events of August 15 when the Taliban took control of Kabul, Ghani in conversation with Gen Sir Nick Carter, the Britain former Chief of the Defense Staff with the UK media said that he had no idea that he was leaving Afghanistan until he was in the aircraft, reported Tolo News.
Ghani said he had agreed to allow his national security adviser and family to leave the country, but he (Ghani) was waiting for a car to take him to the Defense Ministry. The car never came, Ghani said.
Ghani said the chief of presidential security came to Ghani to warn him that if he took a stand, "they will be killed."
"He did not give me more than two minutes," Ghani said. "My instructions had been to prepare for departure for (the city of) Khost. He told me that Khost had fallen and so had Jalalabad."
"I did not know where we will go. Only when we took off, it became clear that we were leaving [Afghanistan]. So, this really was sudden," reported Tolo News.

Ghani has been criticized by many inside and outside Afghanistan for his rapid fleeing of the country, with many saying his departure was the primary cause for the current chaos in Afghanistan.
Ghani denied allegations that he had taken a large amount of money with him while leaving the country, and welcomed an international investigation into the allegations, reported Tolo News.
"I want to categorically state, I did not take any money out of the country," he said, adding: "My style of life is known to everyone. What would I do with money?"
Meanwhile, the former Afghan president said that the Taliban had made no commitment to not enter Kabul, reported Tolo News.
"Two different factions of the Taliban were closing in from two different directions," Ghani explained. "And the possibility of a massive conflict between them that would destroy the city of five million and bring havoc to the people was enormous."
He was also critical of the Trump administration's agreement with the "Taliban," saying "instead of a peace process, we got a withdrawal process," and that the US-Taliban deal of February 29, "erased us", reported Tolo News.
Ghani acknowledged mistakes were made, including "assuming that the patience of the international community would last." (ANI)