The Taliban’s march via northern Afghanistan gained momentum in a single day with the seize of a number of districts from fleeing Afghan forces, a number of hundred of whom fled throughout the border into Tajikistan, officers mentioned.
Greater than 300 Afghan navy personnel crossed from Afghanistan’s Badakhshan province as Taliban fighters superior in the direction of the border, Tajikistan’s State Committee for Nationwide Safety mentioned in an announcement on Sunday. The Afghan troops crossed over at about 6:30pm native time on Saturday.
“Guided by the rules of humanism and good neighbourliness,” the Tajik authorities allowed the retreating Afghan authorities forces to cross into Tajikistan, mentioned the assertion.
Since mid-April, when US President Joe Biden introduced the tip to Afghanistan’s “ceaselessly battle”, the Taliban has made strides all through the nation. However its most important positive aspects have been within the northern half of the nation, a conventional stronghold of the US-allied strongmen who helped defeat them in 2001.
The Taliban now controls roughly a 3rd of all 421 districts and district centres in Afghanistan.
Good points in northeastern Badakhshan province in latest days have principally come to the armed group with out a battle, mentioned Mohib-ul Rahman, a provincial council member. He blamed Taliban successes on the poor morale of troops who’re principally outnumbered and missing provides.
“Sadly, nearly all of the districts had been left to Taliban with none battle,” mentioned Rahman. Within the final three days, 10 districts fell to Taliban, eight with out a battle, he mentioned.
A whole bunch of Afghan troopers, police and intelligence troops surrendered their navy outposts and fled to the Badakhshan provincial capital of Faizabad, mentioned Rahman.
At the same time as a safety assembly was being held early on Sunday to plot the strengthening of the perimeter round Faizabad, some senior provincial officers had been leaving town for the Afghan capital Kabul, he mentioned.
In late June, the Afghan authorities resurrected volunteer militias with a fame of brutal violence to assist the beleaguered Afghan forces however Rahman mentioned most of the fighters within the Badakhshan districts put up solely a half-hearted battle.
The Taliban additionally captured a key district in its former bastion of Kandahar after fierce night-time preventing with Afghan authorities forces, officers mentioned on Sunday.
The autumn of the Panjwai district within the southern province of Kandahar comes simply two days after US and NATO forces vacated their important Bagram airbase close to Kabul, from the place they led operations for 20 years towards the Taliban and its al-Qaeda allies.
Through the years, the Taliban and Afghan forces have commonly clashed in and round Panjwai, with the armed group aiming to grab it given its proximity to Kandahar metropolis, the provincial capital.
The province of Kandahar is the birthplace of the Taliban, which went on to rule Afghanistan till being overthrown by a US-led invasion in 2001.
Panjwai district Governor Hasti Mohammad mentioned Afghan forces and the Taliban clashed in the course of the evening, leading to authorities forces retreating from the world.
“The Taliban have captured the district police headquarters and governor’s workplace constructing,” he advised the AFP information company.
Kandahar provincial council head Sayed Jan Khakriwal confirmed the autumn of Panjwai, however accused authorities forces of “deliberately withdrawing”.
Strategic positive aspects
The areas below Taliban management within the north are more and more strategic, operating alongside Afghanistan’s border with Central Asian states. Final month, the group took management of Imam Sahib, a city in Kunduz province reverse Uzbekistan and gained management of a key commerce route.
The inroads in Badakhshan are significantly important as it’s the house province of former President Burhanuddin Rabbani, who was killed by a suicide bomber in 2011. His son, Salahuddin Rabbani, is a component of the present Excessive Council for Nationwide Reconciliation.
The slain former president additionally led Afghanistan’s Jamiat-e-Islami, which was the social gathering of famed anti-Taliban fighter Ahmad Shah Massoud, killed by a suicide bomber two days earlier than the 9/11 assaults within the US.
The Inside Ministry issued an announcement on Saturday saying the defeats had been short-term, though it was not clear how they’d regain management.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid confirmed the autumn of the districts and mentioned most had been taken with out a battle. The Taliban in earlier surrenders has proven movies of Afghan troopers taking transport cash and returning to their houses.