Turkey holds spoiler card in Afghan cut and thrust

With the clock ticking down to US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan on September 11, the future of the central Asian country hangs in the balance.

One country keenly aware of this – and with long historical and ethnic ties to Afghanistan – is Turkey.

Indeed, recent last-minute maneuvers by US President Joe Biden’s administration have brought Ankara to the fore in efforts to secure a more stable future for the war-torn country.

A US-backed peace conference in Istanbul – scheduled for last month, but postponed – may be relaunched post-Ramadan, with Turkey taking a leading role in this desperate diplomacy.

Indeed, Turkey “Will continue to stand by our brotherly Afghan government and people,” Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu tweeted on April 23, after the postponement.