KABUL: The Taliban on Monday claimed complete control of Afghanistan as they said they had won a key battle for the Panjshir Valley, the last remnants of resistance to their rule.
Following their swift victory over the former Afghan government’s security forces in mid-August and the withdrawal of US troops after a 20-year war, the Taliban turned to fighting forces defending the mountainous Panjshir Valley.
As the Taliban claimed victory, their chief spokesman warned against further attempts to rise up against their rule, while urging former members of the security forces to join their government.
Speaking at a press conference in Kabul, Chief Spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said that with this victory, our country has completely emerged from the mire of war.
“The Islamic Emirate is very sensitive about the uprising. Anyone who tries to start an uprising will be severely beaten. We will not allow anyone else,” he added.
A photo posted by the Taliban on social media shows their fighters at the Panjshir governor’s office – the site of resistance against Soviet forces in the 1980s and the Taliban in the late 1990s.
The National Resistance Front (NRF) in Panjshir – comprising anti-Taliban militias and former Afghan security forces – acknowledged major casualties on the battlefield Sunday and called for a ceasefire.
On Monday, the group said in a tweet that its fighters were still in “strategic positions” in the valley, as it vowed to continue fighting.
The NRF includes local fighters loyal to Ahmed Massoud – the son of the famous anti-Soviet and anti-Taliban commander Ahmed Shah Massoud – as well as remnants of the Afghan army that retreated from the Panjshir Valley.
The Taliban have finalized their new government after moving at such a pace in Kabul three weeks ago, which analysts say may have surprised the insurgents themselves.
As they make major transfers of hundreds of thousands of people to rule large institutions and cities, Mujahid said an interim government would be announced first, and changes would be allowed later.
“Final decisions have been made, we are now working on technical issues,” he told a news conference.
Afghanistan’s new rulers have vowed to be more “involved” in power than in their first term, which came after years of conflict – first the Soviet invasion in 1979, and then a bloody civil war.
He has promised a government that represents Afghanistan’s complex ethnicity.
As the Taliban gain control of the insurgency with the transition to government, they face a number of challenges, including humanitarian needs for which international aid is important.
UN humanitarian chief Martin Griffith has arrived in Kabul for several days of meetings with the Taliban leadership, who have promised help.
A statement from UN spokesman Stephen said:
A Taliban spokesman tweeted that the group’s delegation had assured the United Nations of co-operation.
The international community is in diplomatic talks with the new Taliban government.
US Secretary of State Anthony Blanken is in Qatar on Monday, a key player in the Afghan story.
Qatar, which hosts a major U.S. military base, has been the gateway to evacuate 55,000 people from Afghanistan by plane, and US-led forces have been in control of almost half of the evacuation since the August 15 Taliban takeover. Participated.
Blankenship will also discuss with Qatar efforts to reopen Kabul airport, which is essential for humanitarian aid flights and the evacuation of the remaining Afghans.
Blanken will leave for the US airport in Ramstein, Germany, on Wednesday, the temporary home for thousands of Afghans to relocate to the United States, from where he will hold a 20-nation ministerial meeting with German Foreign Minister Heiko Moss on the crisis. Will do