The holdout includes anti-Taliban militia fighters and former Afghan safety forces, who’ve vowed to withstand the group-AFP.

PANJSHIR VALLEY: Among the many quite a few different holdouts towards the Taliban since their takeover of Afghanistan, the one in Panjshir Valley is essentially the most important.

Comprising anti-Taliban militia fighters and former Afghan safety forces, they vowed to withstand because the Taliban ship fighters to encompass the realm.

Either side have mentioned they wish to resolve the standoff by way of talks however there was no breakthrough on the destiny of the strategic space.

Why is the Panjshir Valley essential?

Panjshir is a slender valley deep within the Hindu Kush mountains, with its southern tip round 80 kilometres (50 miles) north of the capital Kabul.

The valley has restricted entry factors and its geography provides a pure navy benefit — defending items can use excessive positions to successfully goal attacking forces.

It additionally has immense symbolic worth in Afghanistan as the realm that has resisted occupation by invaders for greater than a century.

Resistance from the valley — primarily inhabited by ethnic Tajik individuals — closely formed the political and safety panorama of Afghanistan through the 1980s and 1990s.

Who cemented this status?

Essentially the most revered determine in Panjshir is Ahmad Shah Massoud, a guerrilla commander whose face is on murals throughout not solely the valley however far past in lots of cities of Afghanistan.

Referred to as the “Lion of Panjshir”, Massoud made his title main mujahideen fighters towards the Soviet navy within the 1980s.

Afghanistan’s Ahmad Massoud says he won’t give up Panjshir after Taliban give him four hours

The Soviet Union launched a number of campaigns with 1000’s of troops, assault helicopters, and tanks, however was unable to defeat Massoud after a few of the bloodiest battles of the battle.

He repeated the feat within the late 1990s when the Taliban motion took over a lot of Afghanistan.

The Taliban have been unable to take Panjshir, and Massoud´s forces inflicted a few of their largest battlefield losses on the time.

In 2001, two days earlier than 9/11, assassins despatched by Al-Qaeda — the Taliban allies — killed Massoud.

Pretending to be documentary filmmakers, they sat right down to interview him earlier than setting off explosives hidden of their digital camera and battery pouch.

Who’s within the resistance now?

At this time’s anti-Taliban fighters embody native militia members in addition to former members of the safety forces who got here to the valley as the remainder of Afghanistan fell.

They introduced with them their tools, autos, and weapons, to complement the arms and ammunition stockpile constructed up by the Nationwide Resistance Entrance (NRF).

The NRF’s chief is Ahmad Massoud, son of the famed Panjshir commander.

The group has vowed to withstand any Taliban assaults, however in a Washington Submit op-ed, Ahmad Massoud mentioned they would want international assist to successfully counter the Taliban.

Afghanistan’s former vice chairman Amrullah Saleh can be within the Panjshir Valley and has appeared in photos posted on social media holding talks with Massoud.

How have the Taliban reacted?

The Taliban have despatched tons of of fighters into the areas surrounding Panjshir, in an obvious try to put siege and drive a give up.

Regardless of the escalation, Taliban spokesmen have mentioned they would like to resolve the state of affairs peacefully.

The NRF has mentioned it’s open to talks with the Taliban on an inclusive authorities, and elders from the Panjshir Valley have reportedly spoken with Taliban officers.

There was no breakthrough, nevertheless.

The Taliban have mentioned they’re answerable for at the least three areas round Panjshir, and former VP Saleh has tweeted {that a} humanitarian disaster is creating as a result of meals and gas provides have been reduce off.

Whereas the NRF has vowed to withstand any assault, it’s unclear if they’ve the meals, provides, and ammunition to resist a protracted siege.

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