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AFP
June 22, 2021

Taliban claim seizing three Kunduz districts

AFP
June 22, 2021

KUNDUZ: The Taliban Monday clashed with the Afghan forces on the outskirts of Kunduz city claiming to have captured three districts in a week.

The Taliban have launched major offensives targeting government forces since early May when the US military began its final troop withdrawal, and claim to have seized more than 50 of the 421 districts.

"The Taliban fighters are at the gates of the city and they are fighting the Afghan forces," said Amruddin Wali, a Kunduz provincial council member. He said the Taliban had also taken up positions on highways connecting Kunduz city to the neighbouring provinces. On Monday, the Taliban claimed they had captured Imam Sahib District of the province, the third to be taken in a week. Kunduz police spokesman Inamuddin Rahmani confirmed the fighting, and claimed his forces had killed about 50 Taliban fighters in the past 24 hours.

The Taliban said they had not launched an offensive on the city of Kunduz itself. "We have launched operations around the city," Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told AFP.

Kunduz, with a significant population of Pashtun, had been a stronghold of the Taliban before they seized power in the 1990s. The city´s location makes it a key transit point for economic and trade exchanges with Tajikistan.