Taliban Claim to Have Conquered Entire Panjshir

A member of the special forces of the Taliban told Tasnim that the group has taken full control of Afghanistan’s Panjshir Valley, saying the forces loyal to Ahmad Massoud are believed to have hidden in the surrounding mountains.

Three reporters from Tasnim News Agency have traveled to Afghanistan to cover the latest developments amid the conflicting news about the fate of Panjshir Valley, where fighting has been in progress between the resistance forces led by Ahmad Massoud and the Taliban that have been trying to seize the last holdout province.

During a visit to the Panjshir valley on Saturday evening, the Tasnim reporters encountered a group of Taliban fighters on the main road near ‘Marshal Fahim’ stadium, which has turned into a military base accommodating armored vehicles and military helicopters.

Asked about a ceasefire between the warring sides that was believed to have expired on Saturday noon, a Taliban fighter said there was no trouble in the region and the situation was calm.

The man, who said was a member of the ‘Red Squad’ of the Taliban serving as special forces, said the Taliban units were crisscrossing the area without any problem.

He also said that there was no sign of presence of the resistance forces in Panjshir, and that they have probably taken shelter in the nearby mountainous areas.

The Taliban member, who was apparently the leader of a small Taliban unit riding an SUV of the former government’s police, claimed that the Taliban have taken control of all regions across Panjshir.

On Saturday morning, the Tasnim team also observed many civilians who were fleeing from Panjshir to Kabul for fear of a new flare-up of military clashes.

In another exclusive interview with Tasnim in Panjshir, a local resident loyal to the National Resistance Front (NRF) led by Ahmad Massoud, lashed out at the Taliban for reneging on their promise to form an inclusive government involving the representatives of various ethnic groups.

He also noted that the Taliban’s refusal to share power will result in a prolonged guerilla war in Panjshir that may last for years.

The NRF member also said that Pakistani aircraft have helped the Taliban by bombing the region.

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