Taliban claim attack as spring offensive begins - worldwide

Sergio Conner
April 15, 2019

In a series of tweets, Mr Khalilzad called the announcement "reckless" and described it as "irresponsible to suggest that an increase in violence is warranted because the government announced a security plan".

"The U.S. and our worldwide partners will stand with Afghan security forces to continue our effort to end the war in Afghanistan, at the same time as we seek to bring parties to the table to negotiate peace", Khalilzad tweeted late Friday. "If executed, it will only yield more suffering and thousands more causalities", the United States envoy said.

Friday's announcement instructs the Taliban mujahideen, or holy warriors, to "launch jihadi operations with sincerity and pure intentions", strictly abiding by the Taliban command structure.

Ambassador Khalilzad also added that "The U.S. and our global partners will stand with Afghan security forces to continue our effort to end the war in Afghanistan, at the same time as we seek to bring parties to the table to negotiate peace".

"The killing of Afghans must stop".

The Taliban effectively controls almost half of Afghanistan and has continued to launch frequent attacks on security forces despite holding several rounds of peace talks with the United States in recent months after almost 18 years of war. "Afghan people want peace, and the USA stands with them", he concluded in a tweet. "The Afghan and world religious scholars have clearly said that the war in Afghanistan has no religious legitimacy and its continuance has no legitimate judgment".

"The Taliban made an announcement this morning that they choose violence over peace".

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The Taliban blamed Ghani's government and the U.S. for the violence, accusing them of the indiscriminate killing of civilians in a bombing campaign.

"We are committed to the ongoing negotiations process and a peaceful resolution but can not remain indifferent to the military operations and ongoing crimes of the invaders [U.S. -led alliance] and their internal supporters", Mujahid said in a statement sent to media.

"We are closer to peace than we ever have been in the past 40 years". "Clashes are ongoing between (Afghan security forces) and Taliban terrorists".

Taliban fighters attacked the outskirts of a northern Afghan city and bomb blasts were reported in the capital, Kabul, a day after the Taliban launched their annual spring offensive.

A Taleban statement said the objective of the Al-Fath ("Victory") offensive was "eradicating occupation, cleansing our Muslim homeland from invasion and corruption, establishing an Islamic system along with defending and serving our believing fellow countrymen". Most recently, a Taliban attack near the main US air base in Afghanistan killed three Marines on Monday.

Nangarhar Governor Shahmahmood Miakhel said Afghan forces repelled the attack after reinforcements arrived.

Two members of the security forces were also killed.

Other reports by

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