11 Sep 2021: Classified documents from Afghanistan transferred to Pakistan in three aircraft
Pakistan now has access to crucial, classified data from Afghanistan as three of its planes—which had actually come with humanitarian aid for the neighboring country—returned with "bags full of documents" on Thursday, reported CNN-News18. This development came to light after Pakistan revealed its economic plans for Kabul, intending to conduct bilateral trade with the Taliban in its own currency, the Pakistani rupee. Here's more.
Details: Documents included Afghanistan's National Directorate of Security's classified data
Three C170 aircraft from Pakistan departed from Afghanistan "with bags full of documents," which primarily included the country's national intelligence and security agency National Directorate of Security's (NDS) classified documents, hard disks, and other digital records, reported CNN-News18. The transfer of crucial documents from Kabul was coordinated by the Ambassador of Pakistan to Afghanistan, Mansoor Ahmed, the publication reported, citing sources.
Threat for Afghanistan?: Pakistan's ISI reportedly took the classified documents from Kabul
Interestingly, the classified documents from Kabul were taken by the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Pakistan's premier intelligence agency, a source told CNN-News18. The ISI will be "deciphering" the classified data for its "own use," which is likely to pose a major security threat for Afghanistan as well as make the Taliban administration dependent on Pakistan, top sources told the publication.
Crucial data: The data taken by Pakistan were live, say sources
Moreover, crucial data available to Pakistan were live since the previous government in Afghanistan had not anticipated such a swift takeover by the Taliban. Also, the employees of the agency in charge of the data didn't return to work in the aftermath of the Taliban's return to power. Sources, however, said the Taliban didn't have any control over these crucial documents.
Its intentions: Pakistan intends to eventually gain influence over the Taliban regime
The transfer of sensitive data from Afghanistan looks like another step by Pakistan to "handhold" the Taliban administration in Kabul and eventually gain influence over it, ensuring to keep the Islamist group's government aligned with Pakistan's own interests. Pakistan's intentions to have indirect control over the Taliban regime also seem to be reflected in its presence in Afghanistan's army and intelligence, reported CNN-News18.
Pakistan's moves: Pakistan's economic plans ensure it has hold over Afghanistan's trade
Pakistan's economic plans for Afghanistan and decision to carry out bilateral trade in its own currency will ensure Islamabad has a certain hold over Afghanistan's trade community. Also, ISI Director-General Hamid Faiz was in Kabul recently, reportedly looking for a "backdoor entry" into the Taliban's regime. Pakistan also plans to involve the UN-designated Haqqani Network—of which the ISI is a patron—to reorganize Afghanistan's army.
Inauguration ceremony: Taliban postpones inauguration of its interim government indefinitely
Meanwhile, the Taliban, which was supposed to inaugurate its interim government in Afghanistan Saturday, September 11—the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks in the US—has postponed the inauguration ceremony indefinitely. The interim government was announced on September 7. The decision reportedly came after the Taliban was "pressurized" by allies against holding such a ceremony on the 9/11 anniversary as it would be "inhuman."
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