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Warring Nation Afghan Teaching One Another a Lesson of Peace: US Withdrawal brought back fight to leave thousands of Afghans homeless in Helmand

Thousands of Afghans begun to flee their homes as brutal fighting erupted between government forces and the Taliban in Helmand province on Monday after the US military began withdrawing its remaining troops from Afghanistan.

Afghan forces proudly announced pushing back the Taliban on multiple checkpoints in the southern province of Helmand, where the US military handed over a base to government forces on Sunday after its formal pullout began on May 1.

About 1,000 families have escaped their homes after fighting erupted on the outskirts of Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand, and some other parts of the province, said Sayed Mohammad Ramin, the region’s director for refugees.

He said the families had taken refuge in Lashkar Gah and had come from areas where fighting was intense in the past two days. America’s defence department downplays fighting in several provinces

“We will survey their needs tomorrow, but many who still have not found shelter in the city need urgent assistance,” Ramin said.

The defence ministry said government forces killed more than 100 Taliban fighters in Helmand when the militants attacked some checkpoints on the outskirts of Lashkar Gah.

Another 22 Al Qaeda fighters from Pakistan were also killed in the fighting, the ministry claimed.

Officials said the Taliban fighters initially captured some checkpoints, but they were retaken by government forces who pushed back the militants.

“The enemy has now lost all the areas it had captured and suffered heavy casualties,” Attaullah Afghan, head of Helmand’s provincial council, said.

The Taliban said a large number of Afghan troops were killed in the fighting. Both sides are known to exaggerate casualties inflicted on the other.

Fighting has also erupted in several other provinces since the US military formally began pulling out its remaining 2,500 troops on May 1.

The Pentagon has downplayed the fighting.

“We’ve seen nothing thus far that has affected the drawdown, or had any significant impact on the mission at hand in Afghanistan,” US Department of Defence spokesman John Kirby said on Monday.

FORT DRUM, NEW YORK – DECEMBER 10: U.S. Army soldiers retrieve their duffel bags after they returned home from a 9-month deployment to Afghanistan on December 10, 2020 at Fort Drum, New York. The 10th Mountain Division soldiers who arrived this week are under orders to isolate with family at home or with fellow troops in barracks, finishing their quarantine just before Christmas. In the waning days of the Trump Administration and after 19 years of war, the U.S. military continues to reduce troop levels in Afghanistan. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

Nearly 20 years after US and allied Nato troops invaded Afghanistan and ousted the Taliban government as they pursued Al Qaeda after the Sept 11, 2001, attacks, President Joe Biden ordered the final withdrawal last month.

The Taliban attacks on government forces have raised concerns that American troops were also at risk as they pull out.

Written By

Media person and communication expert for over 25 years. Worked with Dow Jones News, World Bank, CNBC Pakistan, Aaj TV, ARY TV, Abbtakk TV, Business Recorder, Pakistan Observer, Online News Network, TTI Magazine and other local and world Publications.

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