A trilateral meeting between the foreign ministers of Turkey, Iran, and Afghanistan was held in Antalya, Turkey on June 20th.
“Started last day of Antalya Diplomacy Forum with a trilateral meeting with Javad Zarif and Haneef Atmar,” Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu tweeted.
Afghan Foreign Minister Haneef Atmar described the meeting as “first & very successful.” In a tweet, he termed it a “crucial mechanism” to coordinate combined efforts for peace, security, counter-terrorism, and economic cooperation.
The three-day Antalya Diplomacy Forum brought together political leaders, diplomats, opinion makers, and academics.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the operation and security of Afghanistan’s Kabul airport are vital not only to the country but also to the survival of all diplomatic missions, including Turkey’s.
Attending the Antalya meeting, Afghan Foreign Minister Mohammad Haneef Atmar said he supports Turkey’s offer to provide security to Kabul’s airport.
“We welcome it, and we will support it. We believe that this will be essential for the continuation of Turkish and NATO, as well as the international community’s support to Afghanistan,” he said.
Earlier, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Hungarian and Pakistan forces would assist Turkey in providing security to the Kabul airport.
The Taliban has said it opposes any foreign forces remaining in Afghanistan, but Ankara believes it can overcome such opposition.
While the Turkish military is part of U.S.-led NATO operations in Afghanistan, it has avoided armed confrontations.
Turkish officials are in talks with Washington for financial and logistical support. With Turkey’s relations with its many of its Western allies strained and in need of repair, the country’s airport initiative could provide crucial common ground, says Huseyin Bagci, head of the Foreign Policy Institute in Ankara.
“It’s very risky, but nothing can be better for American-Turkish relations to put Turkish troops in Kabul airport. The key problem is [the] Taliban but they can make a deal,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Taliban are making significant progress, constantly capturing new districts, despite reported heavy casualties.
24 #Taliban insurgents including one of their commanders & 2 Pakistanis were killed & 19 others were wounded in clearing operations conducted by #ANDSF with support from #AAF in Garmsir & Nawa districts of #Helmand, yesterday, @MoDAfghanistan said. pic.twitter.com/Aai4Au9XXV
— Reporterly (@Reporterlyaf) June 22, 2021
— Dr. Drexluddin Khan Spiveyzai Kayani (Drexy Baba) (@RisboLensky) June 22, 2021
— سپین مولو (@SpinMolo) June 22, 2021
🇦🇫🇹🇯⚡ The strategic district of Imam sahib on the border with Tajikistan has fallen into the hands of Taliban after heavy fighting. Fighting at the Gates of Kundoz city.
— RAGE-❌ (@theragex) June 21, 2021
So far, there are various reports, but the number of captured districts by the Taliban sits at, at least 30.
In the 24 hours leading up to June 22nd, the Afghan Security forces have reportedly killed at least 230 Taliban fighters, and still they are being pushed back on almost every front.
MORE ON THE TOPIC:
- Military Situation In Afghanistan On June 22, 2021 (Map Update)
- Military Situation In Afghanistan On June 21, 2021 (Map Update)