Afghanistan will have a ‘peaceful transfer of power’: Interior Minister

Afghanistan will have a ‘peaceful transfer of power’: Interior Minister

Kabul: Taliban fighters' presence at the outskirts of the Afghan capital Kabul further tightened the militants' grip on the war-torn country. The Taliban has pledged not to take Kabul "by force" and ordered its members to wait near Kabul gates.

Meanwhile, Acting Interior Minister Abdul Sattar Mirzakwal said Kabul would not be attacked and that the 'transition of power will happen peacefully'. 

Afghan media TOLO news reported that the Taliban did not want to enter Kabul by force or fighting. The group is in talks with the other side to enter Kabul peacefully. 

Also, Taliban, in a statement, said, "They [Taliban] will not enter Kabul by force. The group says that talks are underway with the other side to negotiate entering Kabul in a secure environment to prevent harm to the people". 

Read: Taliban seizes Jalalabad, 26 cities captured so far

According to the latest report by Dawn, as Taliban reached the outskirts of Kabul, panicked workers fled government offices, and helicopters began landing at the United States Embassy in the Afghan capital.  

Earlier, the militants have seized Jalalabad city without a fight, cutting off Kabul to the east. French news agency AFP quoting a Jalalabad resident reported that Taliban white flags all over the Jalalabad city. Hours ago Taliban had entered Mazar-e-Sharif, the capital of Balkh province. With the fall of Mazar-e-Sharif, Maymana, Nili, Mitarlam and Jalalabad, the number of cities captured by the Taliban reached 26. Afghan media reported that most of these cities surrendered to the Taliban without a fight.

This week, Afghanistan government had offered power-sharing with the Taliban as the militanta group captured Kandahar, the second-largest city in the country.

The capture of Kandahar and Herat is considered as the Taliban’s two biggest military victories since they began a broad offensive in May.

The power-sharing deal is a U-turn from the Afghan side after denial for power-sharing with the Taliban during the peace talks in a neutral country Qatar. The power-sharing offer was made the the day the Afghan government reached out to the international community raising concerns of atrocities by the Taliban’s after the US government pulled back forces after two decades. The US forces had dislodged the Taliban’s in 2001 post-9/11.