Afghan pilot who handed over US Black Hawk helicopter to Taliban
Afghan pilot Idris Momand has handed over US Black Hawk helicopter to Taliban. His picture with the helicopter has gone viral on social media.
After Taliban’s control of the capital city, Idris Momand had flown the helicopter from Kabul to his native city Kantar.
In an interview, he said at that time Taliban were entering Kabul and there was a situation of uncertainty at the Kabul airport and he was confused about what to do. “Amid such a situation, I did what I found the right thing to do,” he added.
Naqibullah Himmat, a former commander and Afghan pilot of Badakhshan Airport in Afghanistan, said by telephone from an undisclosed location that when the situation in Kabul became tense, everyone there was upset and no one knew what to do.
Naqibullah told the BBC, “Idris Momand had taken the helicopter to Kantar in a state of uncertainty and he was worried that it might harm him.”
He said that he contacted the guardian of Kantar who gave 0.15 million Afghani currency to Idrees Momand and also sent three people to protect him.
Naqibullah Himmat said, “When the situation in Kabul deteriorated, every pilot tried to escape and take the plane with him.” Meanwhile, the runway of Kabul Airport was closed and all the planes were in place for three hours.
“It was a time when we could have saved those planes and helicopters, but we couldn’t,” he said
He said most of the planes had been taken to Uzbekistan. The planes in Kabul were Russian-made helicopters and Black Hawk American helicopters, but they saw a large number of planes and helicopters were damaged, he maintained.
Naqibullah Himmat related that some of the planes and helicopters were repairable and some were so badly damaged that they might not be repaired.