KABUL, Afghanistan — Ten days after the chaotic evacuation of Afghanistan got here to an finish, a lone jetliner lifted off from Kabul’s airport on Thursday, the primary worldwide passenger flight since American forces ended their 20-year presence within the nation.

The departure of the chartered Qatar Airways Boeing 777, with scores of Individuals, Canadians and Britons on board, was hailed by some as an indication that Taliban-ruled Afghanistan may be poised to re-engage with the world, at the same time as reviews emerged that the group was intensifying its crackdown on dissent.

“Kabul Airport is now operational,” Mutlaq bin Majed Al-Qahtani, a particular envoy from Qatar’s Ministry of International Affairs, stated at a information convention on the tarmac.

In current days, Qatari and Turkish personnel working with the Taliban to restore harm and make the airport principally purposeful once more. However simply greater than per week in the past, the power was a scene of frantic desperation as folks jockeyed to seek out seats on the final business and navy planes out.

When the final evacuation flight left Kabul simply earlier than midnight Aug. 30, it left behind a ghost city of an airport, strewn with broken tools and the deserted possessions of evacuees.

Additionally left behind had been an unknown variety of foreigners and Afghans determined to go away — however with no approach out.

Mr. Al-Qahtani appeared at pains Thursday to level out the distinction between then and now. This, he stated, was not an evacuation. “We’re talking about free passage,” he stated. “We would like folks to really feel that that is regular.”

However for all of the diplomat’s discuss of a brand new period, by day’s finish, solely a single planeload of passengers had left the nation, and “regular” appeared distant for a rustic simply taken over by militants who’re feared by many Afghans and who’re shunned by a lot of the world.

Extra flights had been promised within the days forward. However an untold variety of folks remained in limbo, together with on the airport within the northern metropolis of Mazar-i-Sharif, the place dozens of Individuals and a whole bunch of Afghans had been ready for the Taliban to allow them to go away on constitution flights.

At Thursday’s joint information convention on the airport, Taliban and Qatari officers hailed the flight because the second that Afghanistan reconnected with the worldwide neighborhood. Whereas which will have been overstated — many world leaders clearly stay deeply cautious of the nation’s new leaders — American officers had phrases of reward Thursday for the militants that U.S. forces battled for twenty years.

“The Taliban have been cooperative in facilitating the departure of Americans and lawful everlasting residents on constitution flights from H.Okay.I.A.,” Emily Horne, a Nationwide Safety Council spokeswoman, stated in an announcement, referring to the Hamid Karzai Worldwide Airport in Kabul. “They’ve proven flexibility, and so they have been businesslike {and professional} in our dealings with them on this effort. This can be a optimistic first step.”

The State Division confirmed that Individuals had been on the aircraft, which later landed in Doha, Qatar’s capital, however wouldn’t say what number of there have been. A spokesman, Ned Value, stated greater than 30 Individuals had been invited onto the flight however that some didn’t go.

At Kabul’s airport Thursday, as passengers had been being checked in for the flight to Qatar, the temper of aid stood in stark distinction to the scene there simply over per week in the past.

Safi, 42, who’s from Toronto, was amongst these passing by safety to board the aircraft. He stated he had tried to go away throughout the evacuation however had given up as chaos enveloped the streets exterior the airport. On the finish of August, a suicide bombing attack at the gates of the airport killed scores of Afghans and 13 U.S. service members.

However Thursday was a scene of relative calm.

“Issues are good,” stated Safi, who requested to be recognized solely by his first identify. “It appears the authorities are conserving their guarantees.”

The chartered aircraft had arrived in Kabul from Doha carrying 50 tons of aid support, together with meals, officers stated.

Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the Taliban who joined the Qatari envoy on the information convention, stated that the resumption of worldwide flights can be crucial to making sure that much-needed support continued to circulate into the nation.

China, making cautious overtures to its unstable neighbor, has pledged to present $30 million in meals and different support to the brand new authorities. However China’s international minister, Wang Yi, additionally urged the Taliban to work to comprise terrorist teams.

The United Nations warned on Thursday that the freezing of billions of {dollars} in Afghan belongings to maintain it out of Taliban arms would inevitably have devastating financial penalties.

Deborah Lyons, the U.N. particular envoy on Afghanistan, informed the U.N. Safety Council that the worldwide neighborhood wanted to seek out solution to make these funds obtainable to the nation, with safeguards to stop misuse by the Taliban, “to stop a complete breakdown of the economic system and social order.”

On Thursday, Afghanistan’s new appearing prime minister, Mullah Muhammad Hassan, urged former officers who fled when the Taliban seized energy to return dwelling. The group, he informed Al Al Jazeera in an interview, will “assure their safety and security.”

However these and different assurances supplied by the Taliban have been acquired with broad skepticism. Many keep in mind the militants’ brutal reign 20 years in the past. And lots of are alarmed by what they’ve already seen for the reason that group’s return.

“The Taliban have repeatedly insisted that they are going to respect human rights, but these claims are fully at odds with what we’re presently seeing and listening to in cities throughout the nation,” Amnesty Worldwide stated on Thursday in a statement. “Afghans who’ve taken to the streets, understandably fearful in regards to the future, are being met with intimidation, harassment and violence — significantly directed at girls.”

U.S. officers stated that the Individuals on board the flight from Kabul on Thursday had been thought of the “most ” in getting out, however stated different Individuals in Afghanistan would produce other alternatives to go away.

Senator Angus King of Maine, an unbiased who sits on the Senate Intelligence and Armed Providers Committees, was cautiously optimistic on Thursday morning about Individuals elsewhere in Afghanistan with the ability to depart from the Kabul airport, though he famous the journey may very well be “treacherous and troublesome.” However he stated it was nonetheless unclear what number of who wished to go away remained in Afghanistan, or how they’d get to the capital.

“I don’t need to sound like I’ve a substantial amount of confidence within the Taliban,” Mr. King stated, including, “All I can say is that it seems that, to date, the Taliban has honored their dedication to permit Individuals to go away.”

Whereas the flight Thursday gave the impression to be a step towards resolving a diplomatic deadlock that has left scores of Individuals and different worldwide staff stranded in Afghanistan, it was not clear if the Taliban would permit the tens of hundreds of Afghans who as soon as helped the U.S. authorities and now qualify for emergency U.S. visas to go away.

Taliban and international officers have stated that Afghans with twin citizenship can be allowed to go away, however it was unclear whether or not any had been on the primary flight.

It additionally remained unclear whether or not constitution flights from the airport within the northern metropolis of Mazar-i-Sharif, the place dozens of Individuals and a whole bunch of Afghans had been ready to go away the nation, can be allowed to fly.

In current days, Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken has stated that the Taliban are guilty for the grounded flights, and that they declare some passengers on the manifesto do not need the right documentation.

Mr. Value, the State Division spokesman, stated america had “pulled each lever” to influence the Taliban to permit flights to depart from Mazar-i-Sharif carrying not solely Americans and authorized residents but in addition Afghans thought of to be at excessive threat.

“It continues to be our competition that these people needs to be allowed to depart,” he stated. “On the first attainable alternative,”

Paul Mozur and Marc Santora contributed reporting.