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Taliban capture mausoleum of resistance leader’s father in Panjshir — agency

The Taliban (outlawed in Russia) forces have assumed control over the tomb site of late Afghan commander Ahmad Shah Massoud, father of Ahmad Massoud who has spearheaded the Taliban resistance front in the northern province of Panjshir, Iran’s Aftab News agency reported on Monday.

According to the agency, Taliban field commanders posted a video on social media platforms, showing Taliban fighters having unobstructed control over the mausoleum site which is located atop a hill and 8 km away from Bazarak, capital of Panjshir.

After the Taliban marched into Kabul on September 27, 1996, Ahmad Shah Massoud fled to Panjshir with his units. He led the Northern Alliance to oppose the radicals from there up until his assassination on September 9, 2001, which is believed to have a strong connection to the September 11 attacks.

The Taliban launched a large-scale operation to regain control over Afghanistan after the United States announced the withdrawal of its military personnel from the country. On August 15, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani stepped down and fled the country, and the Taliban forces swept into Kabul, meeting no resistance. The forces opposing the Taliban rule offered resistance, which was headed by Ahmad Massoud, in the Panjshir Province. Saleh, who declared himself "caretaker president," urged the country to support it. US service members fully withdrew from Afghanistan in the early hours of Tuesday, marking the end of their 20-year presence in the country.

On Monday, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid announced that the movement had assumed full control over Panjshir, thus, ending the war in Afghanistan. In turn, Massoud declared that the resistance continues, calling on all Afghans to start a nationwide rebellion. Resistance spokesman Ali Maisam Nazary clarified later that the movement is moving to guerilla warfare tactics.

[Source: Tass, Cairo, 06Sep21]

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