According to Zamir Kabulov, the special representative of the Russian president for Afghanistan, Russia does not want Ukraine to access the hundreds of Afghan military helicopters and planes that were evacuated to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan last year.

“It is important for us that those helicopters and planes that ended up on the territory of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, when Afghan military leaders and servicemen fled and overtook several dozen helicopters and planes, do not get to Ukraine: about 60 in Tajikistan and about 40-50 in Uzbekistan,” Kabulov said in an interview with the Russian media.

During his visit to Dushanbe in June of this year, a US military official stated that the US might let Tajikistan keep hold of Afghan military aircraft in Tajikistan after the US withdrew from Kabul last August.

Amid the Islamist Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan as foreign forces fled, Afghan pilots with US training flew scores of military aircraft and helicopters to Tajikistan and Uzbekistan in mid-August last year.

The Taliban has also sought the two countries to return the Afghan military aircraft.

In the course of their 20-year military operation in Afghanistan, the US and its allies have provided the Afghan government with aircraft and helicopters.

There hasn’t been a formal announcement regarding the precise number of military aircraft that landed in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan in August 2021.

However, national media reports stated that only 81 military planes are currently in Afghanistan, compared to around 164 when the last administration was removed.


  • Saqalain Eqbal is an Online Editor for Khaama Press. He is a Law graduate from The American University of Afghanistan (AUAF).