Taliban gunmen positioned Anti-Aircraft Rapid-Fire Guns and Shoulder-Launched Missiles Around the Airport Fence To Support The Flight Ban

  • What countries have tried to land at Kabul Airport but were denied
  • What airlines have been given access to the airport from the Taliban

The Taliban recently has refused a number of requests for landing at Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport to various applicants, including Ukraine, which sent an Ilyushin Il-76MD military heavy-lifter to evacuate Ukrainian servicemen and civilians. Taliban gunmen positioned a number of anti-aircraft rapid-fire guns and shoulder-launched missiles around the airport fence to support the flight ban. Taliban authorities make exceptions on a case-by-case basis and have exempted the U.S. Air Force until August 30, although a possible extension could last for another 10 days in September.

A Turkish Airlines Boeing 777 appears to have been one of the few foreign airliners to operate in and out of Kabul this week. The aircraft returned to Istanbul, but the airline provided no details about the purpose of the August 16 flight. On August 18, a Boeing 767 operated by Russian carrier UTAir arrived in Kabul from Moscow. According to state news agency TASS, the U.N.’s Assistance Mission in Afghanistan chartered the aircraft to conduct a routine rotation of its personnel.

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