Afghan forces have evacuated close to 200 checkpoints in the southern Kandahar region to the Taliban. The report by the US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) comes as US troop numbers in Afghanistan fall to their weakest levels since 2001.
The province has been swayed by heavy fighting between government forces and Taliban rebels in recent months, demanding thousands of civilians to leave their homes. Afghanistan has approximately 6,000 checkpoints manned by 95,000 soldiers and police officers, representing one-third of the country’s security forces, SIGAR said in its last quarterly report for 2020.
Representatives of the internationally-backed government and the Taliban have been involved in peace talks in Qatar since mid-September.