Kabul: Bomb blasts and firing incidents carried out by Taliban, in the last 24 hours, have killed 28 people, including seven civilians. The Afghan military action that followed killed 203 terrorists. According to the Afghan Defence Ministry, the dead included 22 Al Qaeda terrorists from Pakistan.
Meanwhile, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani warned that ‘The US decision to withdraw its troops has taken the Taliban and its protectors in Pakistan by surprise and they are now forced to make tough decisions. The Taliban and its protectors have to decide whether they want to establish peace and stability in Afghanistan or pursue the path of violence. If they forsake negotiations and choose the path of violence, it will only lead them to the silence of the graveyard.’
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has written an article for a US magazine regarding the US military withdrawal. ‘The US military withdrawal has presented Afghanistan, Taliban and this region with two choices, an opportunity and a threat. If the right option is selected, there will be peace and stability in Afghanistan and, in turn, in the region. Therefore, the Taliban will have to stop its violence and face elections and will have to respect the rights of the Afghans, in fact, those of women and the minority,’ President Ghani highlighted.
However, the Taliban is more interested in controlling power rather than maintaining peace in the country, President Ghani criticised. At the same time, the Afghan President expressed confidence that even if the Taliban chose the path of violence, Afghanistan would not regress to the 1990’s decade. “The Afghan government and military are much more capable today. We are prepared to protect the country and its population, even after the US military withdrawal,” President Ghani claimed. A few days ago, a senior Afghan military official had also declared that his soldiers were ready to annihilate the Taliban.
According to the information released by Afghan Defence Minister on Tuesday, the Afghan military undertook a major offensive against the Taliban in the Laghman, Kandahar, Ghazni, Helmand, Zabul, Herat and Baghlan provinces. A total of 181 Taliban terrorists were killed, and 81 were injured in the attacks. Moreover, 22 Al Qaeda terrorists were eliminated in the Afghan military’s special operation in the Helmand province. Afghan Defence Ministry informed that all of these terrorists were Pakistanis.