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Former Afghan president denies fleeing the country with suitcases stuffed with millions of dollars

The former Afghan president Ashraf Ghani has denied fleeing the country with suitcases stuffed with millions of dollars as the Taliban swept to energy final month.

From the security of his Dubai asylum, the 72-year-old stated he ‘owed the Afghan folks an evidence’ and apologised that it didn’t ‘finish in another way.’

The defeated chief fled in a cash-stuffed helicopter on August 15 as the Taliban stormed into Kabul, claiming he did so to keep away from bloodshed on the streets.

But bloodshed swiftly adopted, with the Taliban going door-to-door to search out and kill former authorities staff, whereas at the airport there was day by day chaos, culminating in an Islamic State suicide bombing that left some 180 folks lifeless. 

Ghani has been closely criticised for the carnage which adopted his hasty retreat, together with by Joe Biden who stated the Afghan authorities had chosen to not ‘battle for his or her country.’  

Answering his critics at the moment, Ghani wrote in an announcement: ‘I owe the Afghan folks an evidence for leaving Kabul abruptly on August fifteenth after Taliban unexpectedly entered the metropolis. 

Ashraf Ghani stated he ‘owed the Afghan folks an evidence’ and apologised that it didn’t ‘finish in another way’ (pictured in an earlier handle to the Afghan folks on August 18 after he left)

A Taliban fighter appears to be like down right into a blood-soaked canal round the airport perimeter the place an ISIS bomber blew himself up and killed greater than 180 folks amid chaos after the fall of Kabul

A member of the Taliban Fateh fighter, a ‘particular forces’ unit, patrol on a automobile round Massoud sq. in Kabul on Wednesday

‘I left at the urging of the palace safety who suggested me that to stay risked setting off the identical horrific street-to-street preventing the metropolis had suffered throughout the Civil War of the Nineties.

‘Leaving Kabul was the most troublesome choice of my life, however I consider it was the solely solution to maintain the weapons silent and save Kabul and her 6 million residents.’

He additionally refuted the ‘baseless allegations’ that he had fled with millions in money.

‘These costs are utterly and categorically false,’ Ghani stated. ‘Corruption is a plague that has crippled our country for many years and preventing corruption has been a central focus of my efforts as president …

‘My spouse and I’ve been scrupulous in our personal funds. I’ve publicly declared all of my property. My spouse’s household inheritance has additionally been disclosed and stays listed in her residence country of Lebanon.

‘I welcome an official audit or monetary investigation beneath UN auspices or some other acceptable impartial physique to show the veracity of my statements right here.’

At the time Ghani fled, the Afghan ambassador to Tajikistan, Mohammad Zahir Agbar, claimed that the president had made off with $169 million.

This was corroborated by the Russian embassy in Kabul, whose spokesman stated: ‘Four automobiles have been full of money, they tried to stuff one other half of the money right into a helicopter, however not all of it match. And some of the money was left mendacity on the tarmac.’ 

After Ghani left the country, the safety scenario quickly deteriorated with Kabul airport turning into the scene of utter desperation as males clung onto the fuselages of USAF jets as they took off from the runway.

Taliban fighters managed checkpoints to the airport and carried out beatings on these making an attempt to depart, including to the pandemonium for the US and British troops at the perimeter making an attempt to maintain order.

Their causes for wishing to flee are solely too plain to see at the moment as the Taliban has ordered all ladies to stay indoors and has solely simply managed to cobble collectively a caretaker authorities as the country stands on the precipice of a humanitarian catastrophe.

The UN has warned that fundamental companies have stopped functioning and of dire meals shortages.

Ghani apologised to the Afghan folks for leaving the country, though this was certified by his referring to the challenges he confronted in a country rife with corruption.

‘I inherited a monster that might not simply or rapidly be defeated,’ he stated.

‘I provide my profound appreciation and respect for the sacrifice of all Afghans, particularly our Afghan troopers and their households, via the final forty years.

‘It is with deep and profound remorse that my very own chapter resulted in related tragedy to my predecessors — with out guaranteeing stability and prosperity.

‘I apologize to the Afghan people who I couldn’t make it finish in another way. My dedication to the Afghan folks has by no means wavered and can information me for the relaxation of my life.’ 

Members of the Taliban Fateh fighter, a ‘particular forces’ unit, stand guard exterior the former US embassy in Afghanistan displaying a Taliban flag on Wednesday

Full assertion by Ashraf Ghani, September 8 

I owe the Afghan folks an evidence for leaving Kabul abruptly on August fifteenth after Taliban unexpectedly entered the metropolis.

I left at the urging of the palace safety who suggested me that to stay risked setting off the identical horrific street-to-street preventing the metropolis had suffered throughout the Civil War of the Nineties.

Leaving Kabul was the most troublesome choice of my life, however I believed it was the solely solution to maintain the weapons silent and save Kabul and her 6 million residents.

I’ve devoted 20 years of my life to serving to the Afghan folks work towards constructing a democratic, affluent, and sovereign state — it was by no means my intent to desert the folks or that imaginative and prescient.

Now will not be the second for an extended evaluation of the occasions main as much as my departure I’ll handle them intimately in the close to future.

But I have to now handle baseless allegations that as I left Kabul I took with me millions of dollars belonging to the Afghan folks.

These costs are utterly and categorically false.

Corruption is a plague that has crippled our country for many years and preventing corruption has been a central focus of my efforts as president.

I inherited a monster that might not simply or rapidly be defeated.

My spouse and I’ve been scrupulous in our personal funds.

I’ve publicly declared all of my property.

My spouse’s household inheritance has additionally been disclosed and stays listed in her residence country of Lebanon.

I welcome an official audit or monetary investigation beneath UN auspices or some other acceptable impartial physique to show the veracity of my statements right here.

My shut aides are able to submit their funds to public audit, and I might encourage and urge different former senior officers and political figures to do the identical.

Throughout my life, I’ve firmly believed that the method of a democratic republic was the solely approach ahead for a sovereign, peaceable, affluent Afghanistan.

Throughout my service to my country, the boundaries of my actions have all the time been outlined and guided by the 2004 Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.

It gives the platforms for dialogue the place our variations might be managed via give and take and persuasion, and the place the acceptance of a typical imaginative and prescient for the future might be outlined and embraced.

Our Afghan custom of Jirga and Shura is deeply egalitarian and participatory and may present a platform for peaceable outcomes for the country shifting ahead.

I provide my profound appreciation and respect for the sacrifice of all Afghans, particularly our Afghan troopers and their households, via the final forty years.

It is with deep and profound remorse that my very own chapter resulted in related tragedy to my predecessors — with out guaranteeing stability and prosperity.

I apologize to the Afghan people who I couldn’t make it finish in another way.

My dedication to the Afghan folks has by no means wavered and can information me for the relaxation of my life.