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Pakistan threatens to strike Afghan forces with airstrikes

Vice President Amrullah Saleh of Afghanistan has accused the Pakistan Air Force of supporting the Taliban and warning the Afghan forces against taking action against them. The Pakistan Air Force warned the Afghan Army and Air Force that any attempt to dislodge the Taliban from Spin Boldak would be met by the Pakistan Air Force, Amrullah Saleh said in a tweet late Thursday evening. According to him, the Pakistan Air Force is now ‘providing close air support to the Taliban in certain areas’. The Pakistan Air Force was accused of these serious crimes by Amrullah Saleh, but the allegations were not supported by evidence.

The Afghan Army was turned into a killing/trap zone by the AAF brigade defending the encircled town of Qala Naw, the provincial capital of Badghis province earlier today. ‘Today, the Talibs used the community elders to negotiate a ceasefire so they could collect their mortal remains and leave,’ he tweeted. A major border crossing between Afghanistan and Pakistan was seized by the Taliban on Wednesday. It is one of the Taliban’s best achievements thus far in their rapid advance across Afghanistan as US forces withdraw from the war-torn country.

The militants released a video of their white flag with black Koranic verse flying above the Friendship Gate at the border crossing in the Afghan town of Wesh, opposite the Pakistani town of Chaman. Taliban fighters said they captured this gate and the Spin Boldak district after two decades of brutality by Americans and their puppet forces. The strong resistance of the Mujahideen and its people forced the enemy to leave this area.

In the Spin Boldak district, south of Afghanistan’s main southern city Kandahar, is Afghanistan’s second busiest entry point and the main commercial artery between its sprawling southwest region and Pakistani seaports. According to Afghan government data, the route is used by 900 trucks each day. Government forces have pushed back the Taliban and taken control of the district, according to Afghan officials. However, civilians and Pakistani officials claim the Taliban remain in control of the crossing.

According to a Pakistani security official deployed at the border area, ‘Wesh, which has great importance in Afghanistan’s trade with Pakistan and other countries, has been captured by the Taliban’. According to officials in Chaman, the Taliban have suspended all travel through the gate. From 1996 to 2001, Islamist militants ruled Afghanistan until they were ousted by US bombing following the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States. Since then, the militants have been fighting to topple the Western-backed government in Kabul.

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American forces already left their main base there two weeks ago after Joe Biden announced all US troops would withdraw by August. Emboldened Taliban have made a fresh push to surround cities and seize territory. Amrullah Saleh, the Afghan vice president, said the Taliban were forcing members of an ethnic minority to convert to Islam or leave their homes in the northern province of Badakhshan. On Twitter, he said, ‘The Kirghiz have lived in the region for centuries. They are now (across the border) in Tajikistan awaiting their fate’.

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