Afghan President Ashraf Ghani in Balkh amid Taliban offensive against Mazar-e-Sharif | World news
The Taliban are continuing their offensive to seize the remaining areas in Afghanistan with the aim of establishing an Islamic emirate. They are concentrating all their efforts on seizing Mazar-e-Sharif, a bustling city in the north and capital of the province of Balkh.
Some politicians in Balkh province have set up a new mobilization council in the province to protect the city. This council is made up of officials and party representatives and elected the former governor of Balkh Atta Mohammad Noor as president. India has already evacuated its staff from Mazar-e-Sharif following heavy fighting.
President Ashraf Ghani traveled to Mazar-e-Sharif on Wednesday to rally former warlords in the defense of the largest city in the north. Ghani called a meeting attended by senior leaders, including Marshal Abdul Rashid Dostum and Atta Mohammad Noor. The leaders discussed the security situation in the north and drew up Mazar-e-Sharif’s defense plan against the Taliban.
As US and NATO forces announced their withdrawal from the country, the Taliban stepped up their assault on major cities and took control of Sar-e-Pul, Sheberghan, Aybak, Kunduz, Taluqan, Pul-e- Khumri, Farah, Zaranj.
The loss of Faizabad, the capital of Badakhshan, on Wednesday was the latest setback for the Afghan government, which is struggling to stem the momentum of the Taliban.
Faizabad is the eighth provincial capital to fall since last week. According to local reports, 65% of Afghan territory is already under the control of the Sunni Pashtun insurgent group.
The Afghan Defense Ministry said on Wednesday that 439 Taliban terrorists had been killed and 77 injured in various operations carried out by the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) in Afghan provinces in the past 24 hours. The neutralized terrorists also included four terrorists of Pakistani origin.
As Taliban fighters continue to invade swathes of land in Afghanistan, more and more cases of human rights violations are being reported. Afghan Justice Minister Fazil Ahmad Manawi said the country’s children are forcibly taken by the Taliban across the Durand Line in Pakistan where they are trained in terrorism in the name of Islamic education. The Afghan minister said children between the ages of 13 and 14 were often taken to remote areas and districts of Afghanistan by so-called “religious scholars” with deceptive Islamic teachings and sent to Balochistan.
Voices of condemnation are coming from various walks of life, particularly from Afghan residents calling on the global community to free the country from the scourge of the Taliban. Among them is Afghan cricketer Rashid Khan who urged world leaders through a tweet on Tuesday that thousands of families have been displaced. “Don’t leave us in chaos. Stop killing Afghans and destroying Afghanistan.
Afghan human rights watchdog, Women’s United Voice Advisory Group on Peace Policy, said Taliban action on forced marriages, which it called a “jihadist marriage,” should be documented worldwide and that the group’s crimes against women should be documented in cooperation with human rights organizations.
Afghan interim finance minister Khalid Payenda resigned on Tuesday and left Kabul for the United States. however, local media reported that Payenda was sacked by President Ashraf Ghani due to his incompetence and lack of success.
China, meanwhile, said it was ready to play a “constructive role” in facilitating negotiations through various channels to promote a peaceful settlement of the Afghan issue. In an interview with China Central Television (CCTV), China’s Special Envoy for Afghan Affairs Yue Xiaoyong said, “China will make unremitting efforts with the international community, neighboring countries and countries in the region. “.
A multilateral meeting on the Afghan peace process was held in Doha on Tuesday, during which Afghan envoys and interlocutors called on the parties to a political settlement to achieve lasting peace in the country. Representatives of China, United States, United Kingdom, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, United Nations and European Union attended the meeting.