The Taliban captured Kunduz, Afghanistan’s eighth largest city and an important trading center, and Sar-e-Pol in the north. These are the successive capitals of the provinces that were captured by the Taliban seeking to take control of the whole of Afghanistan.
– Kunduz is down. The Taliban took over all key public buildings in the city center, the AFP correspondent present said.
Kunduz and Sar-e-Pol captured
Kunduz was briefly occupied by the Taliban three times since 2015. This time the city was captured after fighting lasting less than 48 hours.
The capture of Kunduzu, located in the center of the country and 300 km away from the border with Tajikistan, is of great image importance for the Taliban. Taking control of this city is an unprecedented victory in the Taliban’s march to regain power in Afghanistan.
The Taliban’s Sunday fights for Sar-e-Pol in the north were also successful. The city of half a million is just like Kunduz the capital of the region. “The Taliban are already in the center of the city. Street fighting is underway,” said regional parliament member Aziza Jalis until noon from Sar-e-Pol. By afternoon local time, the city was in the hands of fundamentalists.
– The Taliban encircled a battalion of government troops. It took place on the outskirts of the city. The remaining districts are already in their hands, said another regional deputy, Mohammad Hessein Mujahidad, in an interview with AFP correspondents.
Another captured cities
On Friday and Saturday, the Taliban took control of the capitals of two provinces that lie in the southwest of Afghanistan, such as the city of Zaranj in the Nimruz province and Sheberghan, which is the capital of the northern Javzdjan province. On Saturday, the Taliban also announced that they had taken control of a district prison in Javzdjan Province and had released all detainees held there.
Other capitals of regions that could potentially be captured by the Taliban are Herat in the west, and Lashkargah in southwestern Afghanistan, which is the capital of the Helmand province and Kandahar in the province of the same name.
The specter of a return to power in Afghanistan by the Taliban, who ruled there from 1996 to the end of 2001, imposing a strict version of Islam, is worrying both for the people of the country and the international community.
Main photo source: PAP / EPA / JALIL REZAYEE