Qatar reaches deal with Taliban to resume evacuations - Axios

Qatari foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, is pictured at the presidential palace in Baabda, Lebanon February 9, 2021. REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir

Feb 1 (Reuters) - Qatar has reached an agreement with the Taliban to resume chartered evacuations out of Kabul airport, the Axios news website reported on Tuesday citing an interview with Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani.

The agreement was for two flights per week, chartered by Qatar Airways, and would allow the United States and other countries to evacuate thousands more of their citizens and at-risk Afghans, Axios said.

The minister spoke to Axios on Monday in Washington, during an official visit with Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.

A senior Qatar government source told Reuters on Jan. 27 that Qatar Airways has resumed operating passenger evacuation flights from Afghanistan, after a two-month halt. read more

Qatar stopped operating evacuation flights in early December amid a dispute with the Taliban over which passengers were permitted to take the flights.

Talks were under way to allow one flight per week operated by Ariana Afghan Airlines, Axios cited the Qatari minister as saying in the interview.

Reporting by Maher Chmaytelli; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Alex Richardson

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