Kabul: The Taliban Islamist movement (banned in Russia) has established control over Kandahar, Afghanistan’s second-biggest city, the Associated Press news agency reported, citing regional authorities.
The city was reportedly seized on late Thursday, with local officials fleeing to the airport in order to leave the city.
Afghanistan is seeing a spike in violence now as the Taliban have stepped up their offensive after international troops started a gradual withdrawal from the country, scheduled to be completed by September 11. The pullout was stipulated in the agreement the Taliban and the United States signed in Doha in February 2020.
In August, the Taliban have claimed the seizure of more than 10 out of 34 administrative centers of Afghan provinces.