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Rockets land near Afghanistan’s presidential palace during Eid prayers

Photographs shown on nationwide broadcaster Tolo Television set showed Ghani and the group calmly continuing their prayers at the outdoor palace gathering as stability guards rushed from the group.

The a few rockets were fired all-around 8:30 a.m. nearby time from Kabul’s police district 4, landing in police districts 1 and 2, in close proximity to the presidential palace compound, the Ministry of Interior Affairs said Tuesday. There were no casualties, it mentioned. A spokesman for Abdullah Abdullah, an Afghan official who qualified prospects the High Council for National Reconciliation, said the rockets assault landed “really shut.”

Taliban insurgents denied they ended up included in the assault on the seriously fortified palace, Reuters noted. Spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid instructed Reuters in a voice concept the fighters have been in a “state of defense” all through the Eid spiritual vacation. However, compared with some former decades, the Taliban have not officially declared a ceasefire for Eid this week.

Mujahid did not straight away reply when questioned if the Taliban’s defensive stance constituted a ceasefire, Reuters described. A related incident earlier took place through Ghani’s inauguration in March 2020, when the ceremony was disrupted by the sound of two rockets hitting the edge of presidential palace compound.

Tuesday’s incident arrives as problems go on to mount for the country’s upcoming: The Taliban has been steadily getting control throughout the region as US and NATO troops in the vicinity of the completion of their withdrawal.
According to the Prolonged War Journal, which tracks territorial regulate in Afghanistan, the Taliban has additional than tripled the number of districts it controls (from 73 to 221) given that US President Joe Biden declared the withdrawal of US forces on April 14.

The fighting has surged considering that the announcement, leaving tens of 1000’s of civilians displaced across the country.

Earlier this month, Biden introduced that the armed forces drawdown would be completed by the finish of August, months forward of plan. That procedure is now extra than 95% complete, according to US Central Command.

The Taliban’s quickening advance throughout the region is elevating considerations about the foreseeable future of the war-torn country. Biden has however, staunchly defended his conclusion to finish the war there, stating this month that no quantity of sustained presence in the region could solve its issues and that it was up the Afghans to defend their country.

Close to 11,000 Afghan special forces — who are US-skilled and superior outfitted than standard units — are starting to be more and more stretched slim as the Taliban measures up attacks throughout the state. Without US air support or intelligence collecting, their mission has come to be much more difficult.

New US intelligence assessments have prompt the country’s civilian govt could fall to the militant team within months of US forces withdrawing. Austin Scott, the major US general there, warned Tuesday that the worsening violence could direct to civil war.

Escalating terrorist attacks are reinforcing these evaluations.

Taliban fighters execute 22 Afghan commandos as they try to surrender
Previous week, Taliban fighters killed 22 members of the Afghan special forces as they attempted to surrender. The executions stand in stark contrast to the Taliban’s initiatives to exhibit it is accepting the surrender of troopers.

In a assertion, the Taliban explained “1000’s of troopers” experienced “defected and embraced the open arms of the Islamic Emirate,” which it claims is the correct management of the Afghan individuals.

On Monday, 15 diplomatic missions and the NATO agent in Kabul identified as for an urgent stop to Taliban’s ongoing military services offensive, calling it a person that “thwarts efforts to arrive at a negotiated resolution to the conflict and harms and displaces the civilian populace.” The communique was issued shortly after the militant group and the Afghan governing administration unsuccessful to concur on a ceasefire at talks in Doha.

CNN’s Kevin Liptak, Anna Coren, Sandi Sidhu, Tim Lister and Abdul Basir Bina contributed reporting.

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