Taliban Seize Afghan Provincial Capital in a Symbolic Victory

2021-08-06 19:15:31

KABUL, Afghanistan — The Taliban have captured the capital of one in all Afghanistan’s western provinces, Afghan officers stated on Friday, a symbolic milestone within the insurgents’ relentless march to retake energy within the nation.

Taliban fighters confronted little resistance in taking Zaranj, the provincial capital of Nimruz on the Afghanistan-Iran border, Afghan officers stated. They stated a deal had been negotiated with the Taliban permitting the authorities within the metropolis to flee throughout the border to Iran with their households.

The assault marked the primary provincial capital to be captured by the rebel group because the Biden administration stated it could utterly withdraw American troops from Afghanistan by subsequent month.

The seizure of Zaranj is a symbolically important growth within the Taliban’s marketing campaign, as they moved away from concentrating on rural districts to concentrate on attacking provincial capitals, with Zaranj being the primary to fall.

The 215th Corps of the Afghan Nationwide Military is answerable for safety in each Zaranj and Lashkar Gah, the capital of neighboring Helmand Province, which has been underneath siege for a number of days. The 215th Corps’ management had shifted its focus to defending Lashkar Gah, leaving Zaranj, a metropolis of 160,000 folks, weak to seize.

“All of the persons are hiding of their homes in concern of the Taliban,” stated Khair-ul-Nisa Ghami, a member of the provincial council. “The state of affairs could be very worrying. Individuals are scared,” she stated, including: “The Taliban captured town with none preventing.”

The Taliban have besieged a bunch of such cities for weeks, and Zaranj’s probably fall on Friday is the Taliban’s first main breakthrough. Town’s collapse got here because the insurgents additionally pressed onerous into different provincial cities, in a day of bleak information for the federal government.

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