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Taliban captures eight districts in seven provinces

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(Last Updated On: June 19, 2021)

The Taliban insurgents captured centers of eight districts in the last 24 hours, sources said Saturday.

Local officials told Ariana News that the militants have seized control of Khwaja Sabz Posh and Juma Bazar in Faryab; Meer zaka in Paktia; Muradian in Jawzjan; Barak and Bangi in Takhar; Pusht Koh in Farah; Dara Suf Payan in Samangan; and Bazar Fabrika Qand in Baghlan.

The Ministry of Defense (MoD), however, stated that the Afghan forces would launch clearance operations across the country.

“Strategic, tactical and operational plans would orderly implemented across the country in order to clear the areas from the existence of enemy and the powerful relocation of our forces,” Rohullah Ahmadzai, a spokesman for the MoD said.

Meanwhile, sources said that the Taliban are advancing toward the cities following the collapse of dozens of the districts.

So far, more than 40 districts in 17 provinces were fell to the Taliban since May 1.

“Taliban have reached the outskirts of Maimana (Faryab capital), and ten Humvees, including light and heavy weapons, were seized by the group,” said Abdul Ahad Elbek, a member of Faryab provincial council.

In Takhar, at least 78 members of the Afghan Security and Defense Forces (ANSDF) and members of public uprising forces surrendered to the Taliban due to lack of reinforcement following 30 days of being under siege. 

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IEA expected to unveil plan to get exiled Afghan politicians to return home

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(Last Updated On: May 20, 2022)

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) is scheduled to announce its plan on Saturday on how it will entice exiled Afghan politicians to return home.

The new political commission, which held its third meeting late Thursday, is expected to hold a press conference where they will also announce the names of politicians that the seven-member commission will enter into talks with.

Shahabuddin Dilawar, acting minister of mines and petroleum, who heads the commission, said Friday the plan for the return of politicians has been approved by the IEA’s Supreme Leader, Haibatullah Akundzada.

“Its work has been completed, a plan has been prepared, and the mechanism has been completed. We also met with the Amir al-Mu’minin (supreme leader) on Friday and he approved [the plan]. Our arms are open to those who are abroad and they can return and live with dignity in their homeland,” said Dilawar.

Experts believe this is an important step in preventing further political and military tension in the country.

Politicians and well-known figures of the previous government have also emphasized the need to come together at the negotiating table with the IEA.

“We are optimistic about it. They can contact the coordinator of the High Council of National Resistance, that is in the form of a secretariat, for negotiations between the council and the Taliban (IEA) to be arranged,” said Mohammad Mohaqiq, chairman of the People’s Islamic Unity Party of Afghanistan.

A number of former government officials fled Afghanistan following the collapse of the republic.

Now, however, Hamdullah Mohib, the former national security adviser to ex-Afghan president Ashraf Ghani apologizes to the people for having played a role in the fall of the government and the departure of Ghani, saying that they had no choice but to leave Afghanistan to prevent further bloodshed.

“We had a plan to go to Doha to negotiate, and I personally wanted to negotiate with them [IEA], but that day (August 15) things changed very quickly, and the only good thing we did was to save our city, we were able to save the people of our city. Imagine if many people could not flee the country if the war went from street to street,” said Mohib.

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IEA says progress made on airport contracts with Qatar, Turkey

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(Last Updated On: May 20, 2022)

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) said on Friday that progress has been made in negotiations with Qatar and Turkey to manage the country’s airports but that no final agreement has yet been reached with the two countries.

The IEA’s deputy spokesman Bilal Karimi said an IEA delegation, led by the acting foreign minister, to Doha recently, focused on areas of concern which were identified and that efforts were now being made to resolve the issues.

Among those who met with Turkish and Qatari officials was the IEA’s acting minister of transport and civil aviation.

“The meetings and negotiations were good, and the issues that postponed the negotiations and the points that are complicated were identified as the same points, and the same points will be examined to solve the problems, but no agreement has been reached yet,” said Karimi.

Meanwhile, the First Deputy Prime Minister Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar recently met with businessmen in Doha and told them he had instructed transport and aviation ministry officials to prioritize negotiations on airport management.

“In the discussion of airports, especially Kabul airport, we have talks inside and outside with a number of countries, but we have not yet reached an agreement with anyone, and we are considering it and informing the aviation authorities to take this issue seriously,” said Baradar.

This comes after several meetings in the past few months between the technical teams of the transport and aviation ministry and delegates from Turkey and Qatar.

Earlier this year, reports emerged that Turkey and Qatar were trying to deploy troops to Afghan airports, but the Islamic Emirate has denied the allegations, stressing that their talks with Qatar and Turkey are of a technical nature and there is no talk of a foreign troop presence in the country.

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Exiled Afghan politicians form council, call for talks with IEA

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(Last Updated On: May 19, 2022)

A number of exiled Afghan politicians recently gathered in Turkey’s capital Ankara where they formed a council and called on the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) to engage in talks with them.

The politicians met at the residence of former vice-president Abdul Rashid Dostum and included Abdu Rab-ur-Rasool Sayyaf, Atta Mohammad Noor, Mohammad Mohaqiq, Karim Khalili, Ahmad Wali Masoud, Mohammad Alam Ezidyar and Mir Rahman Rahmani.

Ehsan Nero, a spokesman for Dostum, said that the meeting was held to exchange views on how “we could change the challenging situation in Afghanistan.”

While urging talks with IEA, the politicians issued a statement and declared support for the conflict that is underway in some provinces in the country.

“Such a large meeting was held in Turkey with the Turkish police providing security. They will meet again in Austria two weeks later and then in Geneva. There is certainly something fishy going on,” said Ahmad Saeedi, a political analyst.

Habibullah Janibdar, another political analyst, however, said that such meetings would not help Afghanistan as Afghans have already tested these politicians.

The IEA meanwhile has already formed a commission to encourage Afghans in exile to return home.

Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the IEA, said that the “door for talks is already open.”

“We have no problems with any Afghan. We would welcome anyone returning. They would be protected. They would be respected. Their wealth would be safe,” Mujahid said.

“But Allah forbid, if they intend to start a war, then obviously Afghans won’t allow it,” Mujahid warned.

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