Countdown To Absolute Taliban Control In Afghanistan
The Taliban begin to extend their control in Afghanistan as the end of the withdrawal of international troops nears , which will conclude on August 31, which is also the date they themselves announced for the formation of their Government.
The flights leaving Kabul International Airport are already the latest evacuations coordinated by US forces and coalition allies to remove thousands of people considered at risk from a fundamentalist government.
Still within this period, the Americans confirmed this Saturday the drone attack on Afghanistan that killed two alleged “high-profile” members of the Islamic State (IS) and wounded another.
The attack confirmed by the Pentagon on the same day was in retaliation for the attack on Thursday at the Kabul airport, which was claimed by that same terrorist group and which left at least 170 dead , including 13 US soldiers.
The Taliban have not yet commented on the US operation, although Defense Department spokesman John Kirby assured that Washington “did not” share information with the Taliban about the attack.
Nor has it been specified from where the attack by the Americans was launched, who have already abandoned all their bases in the country, and who only maintain a presence in the military area of the Kabul airfield .
The United States took control of the military area of the airfield on August 16, a day after the victory of the Taliban and their rise to power, in an apparent non-aggression pact that has allowed evacuations but is nearing completion. .
Taliban sources assured that their forces have begun to take control of the military area of the airport , which has already been ceded by the Americans.
The Taliban special forces ” Victorious Force ” are taking control of the military part of the Kabul airport, said Bilal Karimi, a Taliban spokesman.
“Some parts (of the military airport) were evacuated (by foreign troops) and our forces took control of them,” he said.
Sources of the Islamist movement, quoted by the Afghan news channel Tolo, indicated this Saturday that US forces have left three of the entrances to the Kabul airport , which are now under the control of the Taliban forces.
With less than 72 hours to go, this weekend’s flights represent the last groups to leave Afghanistan before the formation of the Taliban government.
Among those evacuated from in the last hours is the NATO civilian representative for Afghanistan , the Italian Stefano Pontecorvo, who arrived in Italy with the last members of his team in the country.
The Minister of the Presidency, Félix Bolaños, receives people evacuated from Afghanistan in Torrejón de Ardoz (Madrid).
“Landed in Rome with my NATO team and Afghans at risk. United with all allies for a tremendous evacuation effort. I will continue my work from outside Afghanistan to get others to safety,” he said in a message on the social network Twitter the official.
The Taliban Government
Meanwhile, almost two weeks after taking Kabul, the Taliban continue to work on shaping their government, a key move for the country’s new phase and the response of the international community.
In a video statement, Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, a member of the Taliban negotiating team , said on Saturday that the leaders of Afghan and Taliban politicians are trying to form an inclusive system, representing all ethnic groups.
“All people will be included in the new system. Talks are taking place with all politicians , ”Stanikzai said.
The Taliban, who are trying to form a government before the withdrawal date, also announced new measures on Saturday to take control of the country .
The main spokesman for the Taliban, Zabihulla Mujahid, gave everyone with public service assets and weapons a week to hand them over to representatives of the movement.
“Violators will be treated according to the law and public property and equipment will be taken back by force , if they do not return them voluntarily,” he added in a statement that does not specify whether this is also directed at public officials and members of the forces. of the deposed government.
During the Taliban offensive with which the insurgents seized power, it is estimated that a large amount of military equipment, including vehicles, weapons and pistols, was looted by civilians after public officials left their posts.
USA destroys Eagle Base
The US Army has destroyed Eagle Base, the last advanced operations center of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in Afghanistan, in the last blows of the final departure of the forces of the North American country that it will culminate in three days.
The controlled detonation of the base , near the airport in the Afghan capital, Kabul, occurred on Thursday, shortly after the attack perpetrated there by the Islamic State, which cost the lives of 170 people, including 13 US soldiers, although the sources of the newspaper The New York Times wanted to point out that the blasting was scheduled in advance and is not related to the attack.
The operation was carried out to prevent the information housed in this former brick factory, later a training center for the Afghan antiterrorist intelligence, from falling into the hands of the Taliban , who reconquered the country on August 15.
These counter-terrorism forces were the only ones to fight the Taliban during the flamboyant insurgent offensive that led them to retake the country in a matter of days. “They were exceptional, the main instrument of the Afghan government to contain the Taliban during these last 20 years and suffered many casualties during those days,” the former CIA officer Mick Mulroy laments to the newspaper.
The compound was almost unknown to Afghans and was surrounded by extreme security measures , with seven-meter walls and a heavy armored metal gate. There is evidence of an extrajudicial murder, that of a prisoner identified as Gul Ramán, who died of cold after an officer removed his clothes.
A disciplinary board of the CIA ruled the opening of a file but the decision was finally annulled.