Aviation authorities reportedly refused to allow First Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum’s plane to land at Mazar-e-Sharif airport, in Balkh province, on Tuesday and instead directed it to Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, a reliable source told TOLOnews.
However, the plane diverted to Ashgabat in Turkmenistan, the source said.
According to him, Dostum has now changed his travel plans and will instead “drive by car from Ashgabat to the country.” Sources said his likely destination would be Faryab province.
However, a spokesman for the Islamic National Movement of Afghanistan, Bashir Ahmad Tayanj has rejecting these claims.
Balkh’s governor Mohammad Atta Noor also rejected the claims and in a Facebook post said a group of engineers were on the flight from Turkey and that due to technical problems the plane was forced to return to Turkey.
Noor said: “The first vice president is currently in Turkey and if he decides to return to the country there will be no legal barriers for him to come in.”
This comes after the Attorney General’s Office last week confirmed the case against Dostum had been handed over to court. Dostum has been accused of kidnapping and ordering the sexual assault against his rival Ahmad Eshchi last year.
Dostum left Afghanistan two months ago for Turkey, citing ill health as the reason.