Qatar flies Afghan cricket team to Doha for training

DUBAI (Reuters) - Afghanistan's men's national cricket team are among more than 300 passengers on board a chartered civilian flight that departed Kabul for Doha on Wednesday, a Qatari official said.

Assistant Foreign Minister Lolwah Alkhater wrote on Twitter the team travelled at the request of the Taliban government so they could take part in a training camp ahead of an "upcoming championship". The team is due this month to take part in the Twenty20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.

Alkhater said there were also citizens from Japan, Belgium, Ireland, Britain, Germany, Finland, France, Italy, Sweden and Canada on board, among other countries, and Afghan journalists.

It was the sixth chartered Qatari flight out of Kabul - and carried the the most passengers - since U.S. forces withdrew in August.

A video posted on Twitter by Alkhater showed a Qatar Airways plane taking off from Kabul airport. Qatar, a close U.S. ally, is a key interlocutor between the West and the Taliban.

(Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Peter Graff)

(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2021. Click For Restrictions -

Reuters Japan United States France Asia Europe Qatar Germany Italy Middle East Afghanistan Canada US Belgium United Kingdom UK Sweden South Asia