Taliban Sweep Through Most of Afghanistan


The Taliban have swept through most of the country, taking 25 of 34 Afghan provincial capitals over the past week. The insurgent offensive captured several of them Saturday, including the fourth-largest northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif. City leaders surrendered Jalalabad to the Taliban on Sunday.

Here is the latest:

Aug. 15 – Jalalabad, the last major city under government control, surrenders to the Taliban. The fifth-largest city in Afghanistan, Jalalabad is the capital of the eastern Nangarhar province and is 130 kilometers from Kabul.

Aug. 14 – U.S. President Joe Biden authorizes another 1,000 troops — in addition to the 3,000 ordered earlier this week — to assist in the evacuation of U.S. personnel and other allies from Kabul as Taliban insurgents drew closer to the Afghan capital.

Aug. 14 – Mazar-e-Sharif, the capital of northern Balkh province, falls to the Taliban after fierce fighting. Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid announces in a formal statement they have fully captured Mazar-e-Sharif, the country’s fourth-largest city, located on the border with Uzbekistan.

Aug. 14 – President Ashraf Ghani makes a televised address, saying rapid consultations are underway to end the fighting. Calls for revitalization of armed forces.

Aug. 14 – The Taliban seizes control of Asadabad, capital of eastern province of Kunar, Saturday afternoon.

Aug. 13 – Abdullah Abdullah returns from Doha, Qatar, with a proposal for a political deal, rumored to involve a cease-fire, between President Ashraf Ghani and the Taliban, according to a former Ghani spokesperson. Abdullah, the head of Afghanistan’s High Council for National Reconciliation, is to return to Doha to discuss Ghani’s decision with the Taliban.

Aug. 13 – Canada announces it is accepting 20,000 Afghan refugees, with the first planeload arriving in Toronto Friday, according to Agence France-Presse.

Aug. 13 – NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg says NATO allies met in the North Atlantic Council to discuss the situation in Afghanistan. In a statement, he says “NATO will maintain our diplomatic presence in Kabul and continue to adjust as necessary” and that NATO’s “aim remains to support the Afghan government & security forces as much as possible.”

The following is a compilation of the provincial capitals the Taliban has captured. There are 34 provincial capitals in the country:

Captured provincial capitals:

Aug. 15 – Jalalabad, capital of eastern province of Nangarhar.

Aug. 14 – Mazar-e-Sharif, capital of northern Balkh province.

Aug. 14 – Asadabad, capital of eastern province of Kunar.

Aug. 14 – Maimana, capital of northern province of Faryab.

Aug. 14 – Mihtarlam, capital of eastern province of Laghman.

Aug. 14 – Gardiz, capital of eastern province of Paktia.

Aug. 14 – Sharana, capital of the southeastern Paktika province.

Aug. 13 – Qalat, capital of the southern province of Zabul.

Aug. 13 – Pol-e-Alam, capital of Logar province and hometown of President Ghani.

Aug. 13 – Firuzkoh, capital of central Ghor province.

Aug. 13 – Tarinkot, capital of southern Uruzgan province.

Aug. 13 – Lashkar Gah, capital of Helmand province in the south.

Aug. 12 – Kandahar, Afghanistan’s second-largest city and capital of Kandahar province in the south.

Aug. 12 – Herat, Afghanistan’s third-largest city and capital of the province of the same name. captured after two weeks of fighting.

Aug. 12 – Qala-e-Naw, capital of northwestern Badghis province.

Aug. 12 – Ghazni, capital of the province of the same name.

Aug. 11 – Faizabad, capital of the northeastern province of Badakhshan.

Aug. 10 – Farah, capital of the western province of the same name.

Aug. 10 – Pul-i-Khumri, capital of the central province of Baghlan.

Aug. 9 – Aybak, capital of the northern province of Samangan.

Aug. 8 – Taloqan, capital of the northern Takhar province.

Aug. 8 – Kunduz, strategic city that serves as the entryway to the northern provinces and Central Asia and is the capital of Kunduz province.

Aug. 8 – Sar-e Pul, capital of the province of the same name.

Aug. 7 – Sheberghan, capital of the northern province of Jawzjan.

Aug. 6 – Zaranj, capital of Nimroz province in the south, the first provincial capital to fall after the Taliban escalated attacks on Afghan forces in May.



Source: Voice of America