Sun 15 August 2021:
The Taliban have begun entering the Afghan capital Kabul from all sides, the Afghan interior ministry said.
Taliban leadership says Afghan capital will not be taken by force
The Taliban have released a statement online saying they have instructed their forces not to cross the gates of Kabul and take the city by force.
They also released another statement trying to reassure banks, merchants and other entrepreneurs that their property, money and institutions will not be distrubed by the armed group.
Despite the online assurances, people continue to leave the city streets and try to find ways to head home.
The Taliban have ordered their fighters to refrain from perpetrating violence in the Afghan capital, Kabul, and allow safe passage to anyone who chooses to leave, Reuters quotes a Taliban leader in Doha as saying.
He also requested that women head to protected areas.
Taliban takes provincial Afghan capital just west of Kabul
An Afghan lawmaker and the Taliban say fighters have seized a provincial capital just west of Kabul.
The Taliban took Maidan Shahr, capital of Maidan Wardak province, on Sunday. It is about 90km (55 miles) from the national capital Kabul.
Taliban capture district in Kabul
After taking the provinces of Nangarhar and Laghman overnight, the Taliban have captured the Sarobi district, an hour east of the capital. It marks the first district in the province of Kabul to be taken by the armed group.
Taliban seize control of Nangarhar
Sources in the eastern province of Nangarhar have confirmed to Al Jazeera that Jalalabad, the capital, was handed over to the Taliban as part of a deal struck by local elders and the governor, Zia-ul Haq Amarkhil with the armed group in order to protect civilians.
Nangarhar is the 23rd province to fall, Jalalabad was the last major city other than the capital, Kabul, to be taken by the Taliban.
The fall of Jalalabad gives the group control of a road leading to the Pakistan city of Peshawar, one of the main highways into landlocked Afghanistan.
A security official in the city said the Taliban had agreed to give safe passage to government officials and security forces while they leave Jalalabad.
The loss of Jalalabad overnight by the Afghan government means Kabul is the only major city not under Taliban control.
The city is a key eastern location and gives militants control of an important road connecting the country to Pakistan.
Reports from the city suggest it fell without resistance.
A local official told the Reuters agency that “allowing passage to the Taliban was the only way to save civilian lives” and confirmed the governor had surrendered.
“We woke up this morning to the Taliban white flags all over the city. They entered without fighting,” a local resident told AFP.
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