News ID: 315886
Published: 0234 GMT August 30, 2021

Afghanistan under neo-Taliban rule

Afghanistan under neo-Taliban rule

Here are the latest developments in Afghanistan following the second takeover of the country by the Taliban militant group on August 15:

Children among civilians killed in US drone attack


Nine members of one family – including six children – were killed in a US drone strike targeting a vehicle in a residential neighborhood of Kabul, a relative of the dead told a local journalist working with CNN.



The US carried out an airstrike in Kabul, targeting a suspected Daesh suicide bomber who posed an "imminent" threat to the airport, US Central Command said Sunday.


Taliban reject Macron’s safe zone proposal


A spokesman for the Taliban’s political office Sohail Shaheen told Franceinfo radio network that it is not necessary to create “safe area” in Kabul after French President Emmanuel Macron said on Sunday are working on a UN proposal aimed at establishing a safe zone in Kabul to allow safe passage for people trying to leave Afghanistan.



“It is not necessary, Afghanistan is an independent country. Can we create such a region in France or in the United Kingdom?” asks the spokesperson.



Taliban supreme leader in Afghanistan: Spokesman


The Taliban's supreme leader Hibatullah Akhundzada – who has never made a public appearance and whose whereabouts have largely remained unknown – is in Afghanistan, the group confirmed on Sunday, according to AFP.



"He is present in Kandahar. He has been living there from the very beginning," said Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid.


Russia calls on US to release Afghan reserves


Russia on Monday called on the United States to release Afghan central bank reserves that Washington blocked after the Taliban's takeover of Kabul earlier this month.



"If our Western colleagues are actually worried about the fate of the Afghan people, then we must not create additional problems for them by freezing gold and foreign exchange reserves," said the Kremlin's envoy to Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov.

The United States must urgently unfreeze these assets, he said on the state-run Rossiya 24 network, "to bolster the rate of the collapsing national currency".



US pullout 'sets conditions for another 9/11': US senator


US Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said that the withdrawal from Afghanistan "set the conditions for another 9/11", during an interview on CBS, as President Joe Biden has set a deadline of Tuesday to withdraw all US forces from Afghanistan, Reuters reported.



That will draw to a close his nation's longest military conflict, which began in retaliation for the September 11 attacks.


Rockets fired towards Kabul airport


U.S. anti-missile defences intercepted as many as five rockets that were fired at Kabul's airport early on Monday, a U.S. official said, as the United States rushed to complete its withdrawal from Afghanistan to end its longest war, according to Reuters.



Afghan media said Monday's rocket attack was launched from the back of a vehicle. The Pajhwok news agency said several rockets struck different parts of the Afghan capital.



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