Saturday, September 18

Afghanistan, in the hands of the Taliban after the fall of Kabul

Afghanistan is in the hands of the Taliban after the fall of its capital, Kabul, and the departure of the country’s president, Ashraf Ghani, after insurgent groups arrived on Sunday outside the city. Mullah Baradar Akhund, head of the insurgents’ political office in Qatar, has declared the end of the war in Afghanistan with the victory of the Taliban, an unexpected achievement due to its speed: “We have achieved a victory that was not expected (. ..) We must show humility before Allah, “said the former number two of the insurgent movement in the first public statement of a Taliban leader after the conquest of the country.

Hours after Ghani’s departure from the country was revealed, the Afghan president explained in a Facebook post that he had to leave the territory to avoid “bloodshed.” Ghani has said that he had to make a “tough” decision at a time when the Taliban were already threatening to take over the presidential palace and chose to flee, he said, because otherwise would have led to the “destruction” of Kabul.

“The Taliban have managed to expel me, they are here to attack Kabul and the people who live in it. To avoid bloodshed, I thought it better to leave,” he insisted in his post. Ghani, who has promised to continue serving his country, has also warned that many Afghans are “afraid” of what is to come, so it has called on the Taliban to guarantee their safety.

After the Taliban entered the outskirts of Kabul on Sunday, Afghanistan Interior Minister Abdul Satar Mirzakwal reported in a video message that talks were under way to organize a peaceful “transition” and prevent an attack. The Taliban had said it’s a statement that they would remain at the gates until the transition of power and would not enter by force, but finally they have announced their incursion into the city justifying that it was to control possible robbery situations before the flight of the security forces.

Hours earlier, when the presence of the insurgents on the outskirts of Kabul was confirmed, the Afghan Interior Minister affirmed that “all forces are mobilized and organized for the security” of the city. At that time, the leader recognized an agreement for “security and political power” in the city of Kabul to be handed over “peacefully under a transitional administration.”

The UN Security Council will hold an emergency meeting on Monday to address the situation. With the departure of Ghani, a group of political leaders formed on Sunday the Coordination Council for the transition of power into the hands of the Taliban, made up of former Afghan president Hamid Karzai, the president of the High Council for Reconciliation, Abdullah Abdullah; and the leader of the Hizb-e-Islami party and former warlord, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. However, at the moment the insurgents have not given details of how the transition process or the seizure of power will be, according to EFE.

Chaos and panic at the airport to try to get out of Kabul

Chaotic situations are unfolding at Kabul airport after thousands of Afghans and foreigners have flocked to try to find a way out of the country, despite the cancellation of many commercial flights. Shots have been heard in the air by US troops to disperse the crowd that has come to the scene looking for a flight, as reported by theGuardian.

The United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and Canada, among other countries, are trying to evacuate their citizens. The United States has completed the transfer to the airport of all the personnel of its US embassy in Afghanistan, hours after starting an air evacuation from that complex that was reminiscent of the one carried out during the fall of Saigon in 1975. Late on Sunday in Washington, And as it approached 6:00 am Monday morning in Kabul, the State Department confirmed that it had “completed” the process to transport the roughly 4,000 employees of its embassy to the airport.

“All embassy personnel are now located at the Hamid Karzai International Airport facilities, the perimeter of which is protected by the US military,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a brief note.

The American flag has been removed from the American embassy complex. The complex airport transfer operation was picked up by television cameras, which captured helicopters going to and from the US embassy to the airport, while Kabul was besieged and later controlled by the Taliban.

In addition, US forces have “taken over” the reins of air traffic control at the airport “to facilitate their evacuations and those of their allies,” and commercial aircraft traffic there continues, the spokesman added.

“This is not Saigon”

In a round of television interviews, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has criticized the Afghan security forces, which he said have been “unable to defend the country” in the face of the Taliban offensive, which has advanced “faster than what I expected “Washington.

While televisions showed images of helicopters transferring all US embassy staff to Kabul airport, Blinken has tried to dismiss comparisons to the fall of Saigon that ended the Vietnam War in 1975: “This is not Saigon “, stressed the head of US diplomacy. “We went to Afghanistan 20 years ago, with a mission that consisted of dealing with those who attacked us on 9/11, and we have been successful in that mission, in the objectives that we set ourselves.”

The stalking of the Taliban had increased the pressure to try to find an emergency exit from part of the population in the face of the probable fall of the city, a fear that hangs over public officials, academics, journalists and, above all, among those who They have worked with some of the countries that sent troops to Afghanistan to fight the insurgents. Multiple countries have announced an acceleration of their plans to withdraw citizens from the capital.