The Taliban captured five of Afghanistan’s 34 provincial capitals on Monday morning, three days before the army appeared to be unable to stop, including the large city of Kunduz.
Within hours of Sunday, the rebels captured Kunduz, which they had been besieging for weeks, after fierce fighting. Then they took Sir-e-Pul, and then, at the end of the day, Talokan, the capital of the provinces south and east of Kunduz.
According to Jabihullah Hamidi, a resident of Talokan, the capital of Thackeray province, the AFP was contacted and violence erupted in the morning and the Taliban captured the city “without much fighting”, officials and officials said. City.
A security official confirmed that Afghan forces and local leaders were flying to a nearby district. “The government failed to send us aid and we left the city this afternoon,” he said.
Taliban spokesman Jabihullah Mujahid confirmed the capture of Talokan, promising “security has been restored”, as well as Kunduz and Sar-e-Bull, who fell in the morning.
An AFP correspondent in Kunduz said the Taliban had taken control of all major buildings in the city.
The city, which has a population of about 300,000, has been captured by rebels twice in recent years, in 2015 and 2016, at a strategic crossroads in northern Afghanistan between Kabul and Tajikistan.
The capture of Kunduz was a major military victory for the Taliban, whose offensive, which began in May, began with the withdrawal of international forces, which must be completed by August 31.
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In late June, the Taliban seized control of the Shir Khan Bandar border in southern Tajikistan, the main axis of economic relations with Central Asia.
The defense ministry said government forces were trying to retake key parts of Kunduz. “Commandos have begun a clean-up operation. Some areas, including the national radio and television buildings, have been destroyed,” he said.
Ibrahim Durial Bahis, Afghanistan’s adviser to Afghanistan, told AFP. “International Crisis Group (ICG).
After the bombing, Sir-e-Bulum fell to the Taliban. They had already on Saturday, and further north, captured the stronghold of the famous warrior Abdul Rashid Dostoevsky, Shebergan.
Human rights activist Parvina Azimi told the AFP by telephone that executive officers and the rest of the armed forces had fled to camps about three kilometers from Sar-e-Bull.
Interior Ministry spokesman Mirwais Stanikzai, meanwhile, assured that reinforcements, including members of the Special Forces, had been sent to Sar-e-Bull and Shebergan. “The cities that the Taliban want to take over will soon become their graves,” he added.
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The incompetence of the authorities in Kabul in the north of the country may prove crucial to the government’s chances of survival. Northern Afghanistan has always been considered a stronghold against the Taliban. That is where they faced strong opposition when they came to power in the 1990s.
The Taliban ruled the country between 1996 and 2001, imposing the most severe version of Islamic law and expelled by a US-led international coalition.
On Friday, rebels also captured the city of Jaranj, the capital of the Nimroz (southern) province on the Iranian border.
The second and third cities in Afghanistan, Kandahar (south) and Herat (west), have been under attack for days, and Lashkar Kah (south), the capital of Helmand province, one of the rebel strongholds.
The pace of the Taliban’s advance surprised not only observers but also Afghan security forces, despite assistance from the US Air Force.
Commander Nicole Ferrara, a spokesman for the U.S. Army Central Command, admitted to the United States that the United States had stepped up its airstrikes, and told the AFP on Saturday: “US forces have carried out a number of attacks in recent days. The air force to protect our Afghan partners.”
Fighting and bombings forced hundreds of thousands of Afghans to flee their homes.