Afghanistan: ‘Taliban have all the cards’ says expert
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Following the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan, they now have one of the world’s best-equipped terror armies including sophisticated aircraft and armoured vehicles, sparking concerns the UK is likely to face more terrorist attacks in the future.
A report last month by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) found the Afghan military possessed more than 150 aircraft, which have now fallen into the Taliban’s control.
These included four C-130 transport planes, 3 Brazilian-made A-29 “Super Tucano” turboprop ground-attack aircraft, 45 UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters, and 50 smaller MD-530 choppers.
Colonel Richard Kemp, former commander of British forces in Afghanistan said: “Britain will face more terrorist attacks.
“The ungoverned space of Afghanistan will be used by the Taliban’s partners al-Qaeda and the tallies of equipment now being revealed are deeply disturbing.
“It means we are now facing a very well-equipped terrorist army in Afghanistan that is being run by the new rulers of Afghanistan and that should concern us all.
“The Taliban is now fully-armed and in control of the entire country – and the west has left this equipment for them to help themselves.
“I am not sure what could have done about it as this was given to the Afghan Army and you cannot withdraw the equipment whilst they were fighting the Taliban.
“But it is a deep concern that this weaponry will be used against us.”
Since 2005, the US has spent an estimated £13billion on weapons arming the Afghan army.
Pictures and videos were posted on social media showing the Taliban parading the newly stolen weaponry.
Taliban fighters were pictured posing outside aircraft, trucks, Humvees, artillery guns and night-vision goggles, sparking fears the militants will use the new weaponry to further suppress the people in Afghanistan.
Among the haul, there are more than two million 7.62 bullets for AK47 assault rifles – which is worth more than a million pounds – as well as military vehicles.
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The Taliban also have A-29 light attack aircraft worth £17million and 100,000 70mm rockets.
The group has also pilfered 4.72 million 5.56 training cartridges, the Daily Mirror reported.
A source added: “Looking at this latest tally of new weaponry – distributed to the Afghan Army just a few weeks ago, many western military people may rightly be quite shocked.
“In some cases, this means the new Taliban army soldiers, such as they are, are better -equipped than many soldiers serving in the legitimate armies of their home countries.
“And if this equipment is not usable by the Taliban, it appears they are already shipping I abroad, either to other terror groups or to be sold on the black market.
“An awful lot of very deadly equipment whose sole purpose is to kill and maim human beings has fallen into the hands of the world’s most dangerous and capable terrorists.”
Following the emergency virtual meeting among the G7 leaders, the UK and other members of the countries pressured the US to delay its withdrawal of troops in order to carry out evacuations.
However, US President Joe Biden has said his country is “currently on pace” to reach the deadline at the end of August.
“The sooner we finish the better,” he said.
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