Government rubbishes claim Afghan president seeking asylum in Cyprus

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Government spokesman Marios Pelekanou has denied a Turkish newspaper report that Afghan President Ashraf Ghani intended to apply for asylum in the Republic of Cyprus.

On Wednesday, the Turkish newspaper Yeni Safak claimed that Ghani had applied or was considering applying for asylum in Cyprus.

Cyprus Afghan“We would like to clarify that such a request has never been submitted to the Asylum Service of the interior ministry, nor in any of our embassies abroad,” Pelekanou said on Thursday.

Afghanistan's exiled president lands in UAE

Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani left the country on Sunday as the Taliban took over the capital Kabul.

Afghanistan's former President, Ashraf Ghani, is in the United Arab Emirates, its foreign ministry said in a statement Wednesday.

"The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation can confirm that the UAE has welcomed President Ashraf Ghani and his family into the country on humanitarian grounds," the ministry said.
In a Facebook video message shared on Wednesday, Ghani reiterated that he left the country to avoid bloodshed.
"The decision was made that whatever happened 25 years ago would be repeated if I had stayed the President of Afghanistan. I would have been hanged in front of the eyes of the people of Afghanistan and this would have been a dreadful disaster in our history," he said.

Mr Ghani left Afghanistan as the Taliban advanced on the capital city Kabul over the weekend.

"For now, I am in the Emirates so that bloodshed and chaos is stopped," he said. "I am currently in talks to return to Afghanistan."

Mr Ghani also said rumours that he had travelled to the UAE with a large amount of money were "completely baseless" and "lies".

"These accusations were all unsubstantiated and untrue, and I refuse them. I reject them, with strong words," Ghani said.