The Taliban said on Sunday night that several hundred of their militants had been sent to the Panjsher Valley, an area of Afghanistan controlled by hostile mujahideen.
The Panjsher Valley is controlled by Ahmad Masud, son of the Mujahideen and Northern Alliance leader Ahmad Shah Masud, killed in 2001, who fought the Soviet invasion and the post-communist government of Mohamed Najibullah, and then the Taliban.
The Taliban said on Sunday that they had sent several hundred fighters to the Valley. In their opinion, the mujahideen refused to hand over their territories “in a peaceful manner.”
Afghanistan. Ahmad Masud puts conditions on the Taliban
On Sunday, Ahmad Masud said he was ready to engage in dialogue with the Taliban, but if they rejected his proposal, war would be “inevitable”. He also emphasized that he did not intend to surrender the areas he controls and that he and his allies were ready to fight.
A few days earlier, in the Washington Post, he appealed to the US authorities for help. He said he controls part of Afghanistan’s territory and intends to fight the Taliban. He also appealed to the United States for help. “I am writing from the Panjsher Valley, ready to follow in my father’s footsteps, with mujahideen prepared to face the Taliban once more. We have stocks of ammunition and weapons that we have been patiently stockpiling since my father’s time, because we knew that day would come,” he wrote .
The Panjsher Valley is the traditional stronghold of the Mujahideen. Also present is Afghanistan’s former first vice president, Amrullah Saleh, who declared himself president after Ashraf Ghani fled the country.
Main photo source: PAP / EPA