Taliban claim to capture strategic check posts in northern Afghanistan

Panjshir resistance group spokesman counterclaims, saying 40 Taliban fighters killed, 35 others injured in 2 days of fierce clashes

KABUL, Afghanistan (AA) – Taliban claimed to have captured strategic check posts from the Panjshir resistance group in the two days of clashes in northern Afghanistan, which continued on the third day on Thursday.

However, the Panjshir resistance group counterclaimed that its fighters killed 40 Taliban fighters and injured 35 others in the fierce fight to defend the valley, situated 50 kilometers (31 miles) north of the capital Kabul.

Since internet and phone connections have been suspended in the Panjshir valley, there is no independent confirmation of either claim.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid informed Radio Azadi, an international broadcaster, that their fighters made progress and gained key checkpoints in Jablus Siraj, as well as capturing the Khawak region from the Panjshir resistance group.

According to Mujahid, the Panjshir resistance group attacked the Taliban, forcing their fighters to confront them.

In a video message to the media, Fahim Dashti, the resistance group’s spokesman, claimed: “We killed 40 Taliban and injured 35 others in the last two days of clashes in Panjshir.”

He said, “The Taliban did not even enter one kilometer within the Panjshir valley.”

The Taliban have taken control of Afghanistan and are expected to announce their government on Friday. The Panjshir Valley is the only province that has not been taken over by the Taliban.

After several attempts for a peaceful transfer of power from the Ghani government to the Taliban, who have announced that they will impose Islamic laws in the country following the complete withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan on Aug. 31, clashes between the two have erupted.

Ahmad Masoud, the son of Mujahideen commander Ahmad Shah Masoud, and Bismillah Mohammadi, the defense minister in Ashraf Ghani’s Cabinet, which fell after the Taliban stormed Kabul on Aug. 15, lead the Panjshir resistance.

Amir Khan Muttaqi, a Taliban leader, stated in an audio message on Wednesday that they attempted several times and held talks for the peaceful transfer of power in the Panjshir valley, but all of their efforts failed.


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