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As Their Country Fell Apart, Former Afghan Officials Fled To Mansions In The US

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Many members of Afghanistan’s last government fled the country in the years leading up to the fall of Kabul and are now living in luxury, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

Many of the former officials bought expensive homes in the U.S. worth millions of dollars, according to the WSJ, which reviewed property records. The officials fled their country as the Afghan people became subject to Taliban rule and Afghanistan’s economy fell into shambles.

Afghanistan’s former finance minister Eklil Hakimi purchased about 10 properties in California from when he was in office to after he left Afghanistan in 2018, according to the WSJ. Eight of the properties were transferred to a company called Zala Group in Hakimi’s wife’s name, one of which is worth $2.5 million, making the 10 properties worth over $10 million.

Afghanistan’s most recent finance minister, Khalid Payenda, owns two properties close to Washington, D.C. worth more than $1 million, one of which was purchased in cash, according to the WSJ.

“Having a house [that has a mortgage] and a rental do not necessarily mean you do not run into cash-flow problems,” Payenda told the WSJ, adding that he drove for Uber when he first came to the U.S.

The country’s former president Ashraf Ghani fled the country as the Taliban began taking control of Kabul. Ghani reportedly left the country in a helicopter he loaded with cash, according to the WSJ.

The country’s former national security adviser Hamdullah Mohib fled with Ghani and later moved to a home in Florida that’s owned by his mother-in-law, according to the WSJ.

“Since the fall of Kabul, a lot of rumors are flying around. I am personally disturbed by it,” Mohib said, according to the WSJ, adding he “made financial sacrifices to work for the government.”

Other former members of Afghanistan’s government have fled and obtained luxury real estate in countries like Turkey and the United Arab Emirates, according to the WSJ.

None of the former Afghan officials mentioned this story immediately responded to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s requests for comment, while Mohib couldn’t be reached for comment.

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