C: https://www.theguardian.com/

The Taliban have rejected the international calls for their ceasefire in Afghanistan. They are now pushing forth new territory. They are now overrunning the key northern city of Kunduz. Also, they are overrun in the Taloqun and Sar-e-Pul. The fierce fighting is also continuing in the two more northern cities.

Five regions’ capitals have already fallen to the militants since Friday. Kunduz is their important gain this year.

The US and the Afghan plans are carrying out the airstrikes on the militants. The Afgan officials say that dozens of Taliban have already died. The spokesperson for the Taliban warned against the US intervention.

The violence is escalating across Afghanistan after the US. The other intentional forces have started withdrawing their troops from the country after 20 years. The Taliban militants are also making rapid advances in recent weeks. They have already captured large swathes in the countryside. Now they are targeting the key cities and towns.

Three of the northern cities have fallen to Taliban control. One resident in Kunduz is in total chaos. Videos on social media are also showing that the Taliban fighters are inside the government buildings in Sar-e-Pul and Kunduz.

The Afgan Government said that the special forces were still fighting in Kunduz. The Taliban spokesperson said that they are now targeting Pul -e-Khumri. Heavy fighting also took place in Mazar-e- sharif of Uzbekistan.

On Monday morning, a loud explosion took place in the police headquarters of Lashkar Gah. Residents said that this had killed 20 civilians in the past 2 days. It has also destroyed a school and a clinic.

The seizure of Kunduz is most significant for the Taliban. The city with 270000 people in a mineral-rich province. The location is also highly important as there are highways which are connecting the province to other major cities.

The border is necessary for the smuggling of opium and heroin in Central Asia. It is a significant symbol for the Taliban as it is the key to the northern stronghold. The militants captured the city in 2015 but failed to hold it for long.

Credits: BBC

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