Taliban captures Kabul in bloodless coup as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani flees country – News Vibe24

    Taliban captures Kabul in bloodless coup as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani flees country - Times of India
    Kabul fell to the Taliban in a swift and seemingly bloodless takeover on Sunday as President Ashraf Ghani flew to Tajikistan, leaving a small group of political representatives to complete the surrender of Afghanistan’s final border to the country’s most advanced forces. within 10 days. The latest act of resurgence of the Taliban came almost 20 years after the overthrow of the militant regime by US troops in pursuit of al Qaeda to avenge the 9/11 attacks on the United States.
    Shortly after the Taliban took over the presidential palace, sporadic gunfire was heard in central Kabul. The checkpoints were abandoned by government troops, even when panicked residents closed the streets. By the afternoon, the Taliban had taken control of Kabul’s main Pul-e-Charkhi prison, releasing thousands of detainees, videos showed on social media.
    As he took over Kabul, Ghani left the country with his key aides without expecting what the Taliban had said would be a formal surrender to a caretaker government following his resignation. Late at night, Reuters quoted two Taliban officials as saying there would be no transitional government, followed by reports of Kabul airport being attacked.
    “The security situation in Kabul is changing rapidly, including at the airport. There are reports that the airport is on fire. Therefore, we are instructing American citizens to protect themselves,” Reuters told the US embassy.
    Earlier in the day, there were reports of talks at the presidential palace between the Taliban and government officials led by former President Hamid Karzai and Abdullah Abdullah, head of the Afghan National Reconciliation Council. Afghan media have reported that Ali Ahmed Jalali, the country’s former ambassador to Germany, could lead the interim government. Incumbent Defense Minister Bismillah Mohammadi said a roadmap was being prepared for the peaceful transfer of power to the transitional government.
    Taliban leaders, who had earlier called on their fighters to avoid violence in Kabul and allow safe passage to anyone seeking to leave the city, were later ordered to tighten the city to prevent looting.
    The Taliban victory coincided with the rapid departure of US and British diplomats and other civilians before flights to Kabul airport were suspended for several hours. Ross Wilson, the top US diplomat in Afghanistan, and other officials carried a helicopter to the airport, even when the US flag was flown over the embassy.
    The smoke was found on the roof of the embassy before the Americans left, sparking speculation that US diplomats destroyed all sensitive documents before leaving the complex.
    Germany said it would send military aircraft late Sunday to evacuate Germans as well as Afghan support personnel. NATO is reportedly discussing the evolving situation while the UN Security Council will meet on Monday morning, Reuters quoted diplomats as saying.
    Pakistani Ambassador to Afghanistan Mansour Ahmad Khan and former envoy Muhammad Sadiq have confirmed that they have received an Afghan political delegation, including Wolesi Jirga (National Assembly) President Mir Ohan Mehman Khan Rehman Khan Zia Massoud, Ahmad Wali Massoud, Abdul Latif Pedram and Khalid Noor.
    “I am honored to receive a delegation of Afghan political leaders who have arrived in Islamabad for a three-day consultative visit on the path to peace and stability in Afghanistan,” Khan wrote on Twitter.
    Prior to the final round of the Taliban uprising, its fighters had taken control of the strategically important city of Jalalabad in the eastern province of Nangarhar, on the border with Pakistan. Troops then stormed the Bagram airport and jail on the outskirts of Kabul. The Bagram group has been at the center of the war against the Taliban and al Qaeda for about 20 years until last month, when the U.S. military abandoned the facility without notifying the Kabul administration.
    The Bagram prison, once named Guantanamo Bay in Afghanistan, was handed over by the Americans to the Afghan authorities in 2013. Sources said that in recent Doha meetings it was decided not to shed blood in Kabul.
    Sohail Shaheen, a spokesman for the Doha-based Taliban and part of the militant group’s negotiating team, told the media that they would take full control of Afghanistan in the coming days, albeit with a “peaceful transfer”. He presented the Taliban’s policies before the expected transfer of power. “We want an inclusive Islamic government … that means all Afghans will be part of this government,” he said.
    Shaheen urged foreign diplomats and workers not to leave the country, assuring them that Taliban fighters would not target them. “There will be no danger to diplomats, to NGOs, to anyone. Everyone should continue their work as they did in the past,” he said.
    He also tried to dispel fears that Afghanistan would once again be chained by the ultra-conservative version of Islamic law that prevailed in the country before 2001. “The Taliban will seek a new chapter of tolerance, peaceful coexistence and national unity for the country and its people, “said Shaheen.” We want to open a new chapter of peace, tolerance, peaceful coexistence and national unity for the country and its people. We assure everyone that there will be no revenge on anyone. ”
    A Doha spokesman said the Taliban would “reconsider their relationship with the United States” to pursue a new chapter in co-operation.

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