The Taliban have declared Monday a public holiday in Afghanistan to mark one year since the Islamist militant group conquered Kabul during the chaotic withdrawal of US-led NATO forces.
“August 15 is the first anniversary of the victory of the Afghans’ Jihad, led by the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, against the American and its allies’ occupation,” dpa news agency reported quoting the Taliban Labour and Social Affairs Ministry’s statement.
Taliban fighters entered Kabul without a fight last year before gradually re-imposing their draconic rule. Security forces of the former Afghan republic dispersed and the country’s president fled the country with two military helicopters.
Tens of thousands of Afghans rushed to Kabul International Airport in an attempt to flee the country.
Since then, arbitrary arrests, extra-judicial killings of former Afghan officials, Islamic State attacks against religious minorities and general economic hardships have become the order of the day.
Recently, US President Joe Biden announced that a US airstrike had killed al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri in Kabul’s diplomatic enclave.
The Taliban condemned the attack, saying they had not been aware of al-Zawahiri’s presence in Kabul.