‘US strengthened al-Qaeda in Afghanistan in the name of war against militancy’

PESHAWAR: Former Afghan president Hamid Karzai has accused the United States of strengthening al-Qaeda in Afghanistan in the name of war against militancy.

In an interview with a Russian channel, Hamid Karzai said nothing flies in Afghanistan without the permission of the US. “They have mercenaries in Afghanistan with their own army, aviation and security service. I tried to kick them out of the country, but I failed,” Karzai said.

He said he is unable to understand in which manner the war against militancy is being fought, as al-Qaeda is stronger in Afghanistan than before and their attacks have also increased. He said the quantity of arms with the Taliban has also increased.

He said Americans lie when they say that al-Qaeda emerged as the result of Russia’s invasion. “They wanted to be the only superpower and they did it. The USSR collapsed and one of the reasons was the Afghan war,” he said.

The former president said Russia is the only force which can help Afghanistan fight terrorism.

“I understand perfectly well that if you (Russia) build new relations with Pakistan and Afghanistan, you can help us,” he said. Karzai said neither US nor Britain can help Afghanistan. “Not the Britons as we kicked them out of the country several times, not the Americans as they’ve been killing us for 17 years, but Russia only. We (Afghanistan) are the last barrier from terrorists. We’ve been fighting continuously for a century and a half,” he added.

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