Sat. May 28th, 2022


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Afghanistan chaos: President’s urgent plea as Taliban ‘nears gateway to Kabul’

3 min read

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The Taliban have surged across Afghanistan over the past week, capturing more than a dozen provincial capitals. Responding in a televised statement, President Ghani said the “remobilization of armed forces” is his “top priority” in face of the onslaught.

However, there are fears any action may be too late, with Taliban fighters fast descending on Kabul.

Both the US and UK have sent troops to the Afghan capital to help evacuate their nationals.

In his address President Ghani said: “I understand that you are worried about your future, I assure you as your president that I will concentrate on preventing expansion of instability, violence and displacement of my people.

“We have held extensive consultations with everyone within the government and international partners.

“Consultations are ongoing and the results will be shared soon.”

On Thursday the Taliban seized Kandahar and Herat, the second and third biggest cities in Afghanistan respectively.

Kandahar is the Taliban’s spiritual heartland, and served as its de facto capital when it ruled much of the country prior to the US invasion.

They seized more cities on Friday, and are currently advancing on Kabul.

Journalist John Robb tweeted: “Taliban forces are only a handful of miles from Kabul.

“They can simply drive up to Kabul’s airport and either shut it down with mortars or take it in a coup de main, before the evacuation is complete.

“At that point, it’s not just an embarrassment, it’s a military disaster.”

The BBC’s Nicola Careem added: “Source confirm to the BBC that the Taliban are in Maidan Shahr where heavy fighting is on going near the Governor’s compound.


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“This is the gateway to Kabul. Feels like we’re on the brink of the ‘game-over’ moment.”

President Biden had vowed to remove all American troops from Afghanistan by the 20th anniversary of 9/11.

However as US and NATO troops withdrew, the Taliban were able to make rapid gains across the country.

Following a string of victories in rural areas during June and July, Afghan cities began falling like dominos this month.

Taliban is 'more powerful than ever' says commentator

In 2020 the Taliban signed a peace deal with the Trump administration, who agreed to withdraw US troops in response for a Taliban pledge not to harbour Al-Qaeda terrorists again.

However there have already been reports members of Al-Qaeda, and other extremist groups, are operating on the ground with the Taliban.

Former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd has urged Mr Biden to reverse the US withdrawal.

He said: “The fall of Oruzgan to the Taliban, and the reported threat to Kabul, is an unmitigated disaster for the good people of Afghanistan

“It is now urgent that the US Administration reverse the course of its final military withdrawal.”

The US invaded Afghanistan in 2001, after the Taliban provided shelter to the Al-Qaeda terrorists who launched the 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington DC.
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