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Taliban capture Lashkar Gah: US, UK to evacuate their diplomatic staff from Afghanistan

The United States and Britain have ordered the deployment of thousands of troops to Afghanistan to evacuate their nationals.

FILE PHOTO: Armed men who are against Taliban uprising stand at their check post, at the Ghorband District, Parwan Province, Afghanistan June 29, 2021. REUTERS/Omar Sobhani/File Photo

The Taliban continued to capture more cities and towns in Afghanistan. Their newest victory is the take-over of Lashkar Gah in southern Afghanistan, a day after the group claimed control over Kandahar and Herat, the country’s second and third largest cities. Thus, so far, the Taliban have captured 12 provincial capital cities in Afghanistan within a week.

Meanwhile, the United States and Britain say they would send thousands of troops to help evacuate their embassy staff in the war-torn nation.

The Taliban have captured Lashkar Gah, the provincial capital of Afghanistan’s Helmand, the largest province in the country by area.

Military and government officials had evacuated the city after striking a deal with the Taliban, according to the security officials.

In Qatar, international envoys to Afghan negotiations have called for an accelerated peace process as a “matter of great urgency” and for an immediate halt to attacks on cities.

Meanwhile, residents in the city of Kandahar have confirmed to media that Afghanistan’s second-largest city has fallen to the Taliban: the 12th provincial capital the armed group has overrun in a week.

Early on Friday morning, residents said the armed group’s black-on-white flag was hanging by the provincial governor’s compound. Al-Jazeera reported on Friday.

US, UK to launch evacuation flights

The United States and Britain have ordered the deployment of thousands of troops to Afghanistan to evacuate their nationals.

The Pentagon said it would send about 3,000 extra troops within 48 hours to help evacuate embassy staff. The State Department said it would also increase the tempo of Special Immigration Visa flights for Afghans who helped the US effort in the country.

Britain said it would deploy approximately 600 troops to help its nationals and local translators get out.

UN Security Council discusses condemnation of Taliban

The UN Security Council is discussing a draft statement that would condemn Taliban attacks on cities and towns causing high civilian casualties and threaten sanctions for abuses and acts that risk Afghanistan’s peace and stability, diplomats said.

The formal statement, drafted by Estonia and Norway and seen by the Reuters news agency, has to be agreed by consensus by the 15-member body.

The text also “strongly affirms that the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan is not recognised at the UN and declares that it does not and will not support the establishment of any government in Afghanistan imposed through military force or restoration of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan”.

Javed Mahmood
Written By

I am an experienced writer, analyst, and author. My exposure in English journalism spans more than 28 years. In the past, I have been working with daily The Muslim (Lahore Bureau), daily Business Recorder (Lahore/Islamabad Bureaus), Daily Times, Islamabad, daily The Nation (Lahore and Karachi). With daily The Nation, I have served as Resident Editor, Karachi. Since 2009, I have been working as a Freelance Writer/Editor for American organizations.


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