Taliban - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Taliban

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Gunmen storm Sikh-Hindu temple in ongoing Kabul assault

Mar 25, 2020 - 3:35 PM

The attack comes as Afghanistan is facing myriad crises including a raging insurgency, political deadlock, a massive cut in US aid, a flailing peace process and rising coronavirus cases

In this photograph taken on March 22, 2020 an Afghan policeman searches people travelling in a car at a road checkpoint in Kabul. WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP

Pompeo in Kabul to try to break political deadlock

Mar 23, 2020 - 8:12 PM

The visit comes just a day after the Afghan government and Taliban held their first discussion on prisoner exchanges – a key step in a broader push for peace

BREAK DEADLOCK. In this handout photograph taken and released by Press Office of President of Afghanistan on March 23, 2020, Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani speaks with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (L) during their meeting in Kabul. AFP PHOTO/Press Office of President of Afghanistan

Kabul to release 5,000 Taliban prisoners if violence eases

Mar 11, 2020 - 9:47 AM

A Taliban leader accuses Kabul of acting in bad faith, alleging that 'the government (planned) to release only those prisoners who are elderly, very ill, or those whose sentences have expired'

CEASEFIRE. Afghan Taliban militants ride a motorbike as they took to the street to celebrate ceasefire on the second day of Eid in the outskirts of Jalalabad on June 16, 2018. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Pentagon downplays new Taliban attacks

Mar 05, 2020 - 10:11 AM

'There's no high profile attacks, there's no suicide bombers, there's no vehicle-borne suicide, no attack against the US forces, no attack against the coalition,' says General Mark Milley

DISCUSSION. Members of the Taliban delegation gather ahead of the signing ceremony with the United States in the Qatari capital Doha, on February 29, 2020. Photo by Giuseppe Cacace/AFP

U.S. launches air strike against Taliban to defend Afghan forces

Mar 04, 2020 - 7:11 PM

US Forces-Afghanistan spokesman Sonny Leggett says the air strike took place against Taliban fighters who were 'actively attacking' an Afghan forces checkpoint in Helmand province

WHAT HAPPENS TO PEACE PROCESS? Members of the Taliban delegation gather ahead of the signing ceremony with the United States in the Qatari capital Doha, on February 29, 2020. File photo by Giuseppe Cacace/AFP

Trump, Taliban political chief speak as Afghan violence rises

Mar 04, 2020 - 9:19 AM

The insurgents are the first to give news of the highly unusual phone call, which they say lasted 35 minutes

MULLAH. Taliban co-founder and political leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar attends talks with Afghan political figures in Moscow on May 30, 2019. Photo by Nikolay Korzhov/AFP

Taliban attack Afghan army bases, throwing peace talks into doubt

Mar 03, 2020 - 8:22 PM

The halt to the limited truce, which began on February 22, ends what was a welcome reprieve for ordinary Afghans who have born the brunt of the deadly violence

PARTIAL TRUCE ENDS. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani gestures as he speaks during a gathering to assess the general security situation in the in Jalalabad Province, in Jalalabad on March 3, 2020. Photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Taliban end partial truce as Afghan violence resumes

Mar 02, 2020 - 10:22 PM

'As per the (US-Taliban) agreement, our mujahideen will not attack foreign forces but our operations will continue against the Kabul administration forces,' says Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid

AFTER DEAL. Afghan Taliban militants and villagers attend a gathering as they celebrate the peace deal and their victory in the Afghan conflict on US in Afghanistan, in Alingar district of Laghman Province on March 2, 2020. Photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Afghanistan's partial truce will continue, 'with goal' for full ceasefire

Mar 01, 2020 - 3:30 PM

Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani pushes back against a clause in the deal that calls for the Taliban to release up to 1,000 prisoners and for the Afghan government to release up to 5,000 prisoners

(FILES) In this file photo taken on August 27, 2017 US Marines and Afghan Commandos stand together as an Afghan Air Force helicopter flies past during a combat training exercise at Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. - The United States has secured a seven-day reduction in violence in talks to help seek a negotiated settlement in Afghanistan, Pentagon chief Mark Esper said February 13, 2020. The announcement came as NATO defence ministers met in Brussels and a day after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani reported "notable progress" in negotiations with the Islamist insurgents."The United States and the Taliban have negotiated a proposal for a seven-day reduction in violence," Esper told reporters, dubbing his meetings with NATO colleagues "productive." (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP)

Peace, but not at our cost: Afghan women fear Taliban return

Mar 01, 2020 - 2:26 PM

Women remain wary of the insurgents, desperate to see an end to the violence, but fearful of paying a heavy price

U.S., Taliban sign historic deal on Afghanistan's future

Feb 29, 2020 - 10:22 PM

American troops are set to pull out from Afghanistan in 14 months

WITHDRAWAL. US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar shake hands after signing a peace agreement during a ceremony in the Qatari capital Doha on February 29, 2020. Photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP

Trump says he would sign a peace deal with the Taliban

Feb 23, 2020 - 11:00 PM

A partial truce is in effect in Afghanistan and could ultimately lead to a withdrawal of US forces after more than 18 years

RETURN. US President Donald Trump walks on the South Lawn upon his return to the White House in Washington, DC, on February 16, 2020. (Photo by Olivier Douliery / AFP

Afghans mark start of week-long partial truce amid isolated attacks

Feb 22, 2020 - 4:09 PM

The partial truce is expected to set the conditions for Washington and the insurgents to sign a deal that could ultimately pull US troops out after more than 18 years

A general view of the capital city of Kabul is pictured on August 3, 2019, as new talks between the US and the Taliban go on. - Washington is hoping for a breakthrough as talks between the US and the Taliban resumed in Doha on Saturday in a bid to end 18 years of war in Afghanistan. (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP)

U.S. prepares to sign withdrawal deal with Taliban on February 29

Feb 21, 2020 - 9:36 PM

Both US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the Taliban issue statements saying they have agreed to sign the accord on February 29 in Doha, following the one-week partial truce

US-TALIBAN TALKS. In this file photo taken on August 27, 2017 US Marines and Afghan Commandos stand together as an Afghan Air Force helicopter flies past during a combat training exercise at Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S. announces partial Taliban truce, Trump says peace deal 'close'

Feb 14, 2020 - 8:28 AM

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani reports 'notable progress' in negotiations with the Islamist extremists

SOLDIERS. In this photo taken on June 6, 2019, US soldiers look out over hillsides during a visit of the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Scott Miller at the Afghan National Army (ANA) checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. Photo by Thomas Watkin/AFP

U.S.-Taliban breakthrough appears closer as Ghani reports progress

Feb 12, 2020 - 7:26 PM

Washington and the insurgents have been locked in grueling talks that have stretched over more than a year for an agreement that would see the US pull thousands of troops from Afghanistan

TALKS. Afghan's President Ashraf Ghani looks on during a bilateral meeting with US President Donald Trump at Bagram Air Field during a surprise Thanksgiving day visit, on November 28, 2019 in Afghanistan. File photo by Olivier Douliery/AFP

Surrendered Pakistani Taliban spokesman escapes custody – official

Feb 09, 2020 - 9:33 PM

The confirmation comes days after Ehsanullah Ehsan, the former spokesman for the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, released an audio message claiming he had escaped detention and was now in Turkey

Taliban: 'No ceasefire plans' in Afghanistan

Dec 30, 2019 - 8:33 PM

The statement from the insurgents comes as local and international forces brace for another bloody winter amid renewed US-Taliban talks

KABUL. A general view of the capital city of Kabul, Afghanistan is pictured on August 3, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Afghan war caused 100,000 civilian casualties in last decade – U.N.

Dec 26, 2019 - 10:54 PM

The announcement comes as the Taliban and US continue to hold talks aimed at drawing a close to America's longest war

9 Afghan forces killed in Taliban insider attack – official

Dec 14, 2019 - 6:46 PM

The Afghan Ministry of Defense says the national army troops 'were martyred by Taliban terrorists in Qarabagh district of Ghazni province'

U.S. resumes talks with Taliban in Doha – US source

Dec 07, 2019 - 5:37 PM

The source says the focus of discussion will be reduction of violence that leads to intra-Afghan negotiations and a ceasefire

Trump visits troops in Afghanistan, says Taliban talks back on

Nov 29, 2019 - 8:05 AM

On a brief visit to Bagram Airfield outside the capital of Kabul, the US president serves turkey dinner to soldiers, poses for photographs and delivers a speech after meeting Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

US President Donald Trump speaks to the troops during a surprise Thanksgiving day visit at Bagram Air Field, on November 28, 2019 in Afghanistan. Olivier Douliery / AFP

Taliban release 2 Western hostages in Afghanistan

Nov 19, 2019 - 11:19 PM

The Taliban's main spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, confirms that the transfer of the Taliban prisoners 'is complete, and they have arrived where they were supposed to come'

SWAP. This file handout photo taken on October 15, 2014, by the Afghan National Directorate of Security shows Taliban prisoner Anas Haqqani, a senior leader of the Haqqani network, in Kabul. AFP PHOTO/Afghan National Directorate of Security (NDS)

Afghanistan to release senior Taliban prisoners in apparent swap

Nov 12, 2019 - 6:59 PM

The 3 Taliban prisoners include Anas Haqqani, who was seized in 2014 and whose older brother is the deputy Taliban leader and head of the Haqqani network, a notorious Taliban affiliate

SWAP. In this file photo, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani speaks during a joint press conference at the Presidential Palace in Kabul on November 6, 2018. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Young Taliban must be heard, says new United Nations youth envoy

Oct 29, 2019 - 3:48 PM

For 20-year-old youth delegate Aisha Khurram, reaching out to all young Afghans – including those joining the ranks of the Taliban insurgency – is critical

AISHA KHURRAM. In this photo taken on October 16, 2019, Aisha Khurram, 20, Afghanistan's youth representative to the United Nations, speaks during an interview with AFP in Kabul. Photo by Wakil Kohsar /AFP

At least 62 killed in Afghan mosque blast

Oct 18, 2019 - 11:48 PM

The blast comes after the UN released a new report saying an 'unprecedented' number of civilians were killed or wounded in Afghanistan from July to September

VIOLENCE. A volunteer carries an injured youth to hospital, following a bomb blast in Haska Mina district of Nangarhar Province on October 18, 2019. Photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Taliban co-founder heads to Pakistan as U.S. envoy visits

Oct 02, 2019 - 4:26 PM

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid says the Pakistan visit would be the fourth leg of a tour that included Russia, China and Iran

HEADING TO PAKISTAN. Taliban co-founder and political leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar attends talks with Afghan political figures in Moscow on May 30, 2019. File photo by Nikolay Korzhov/AFP

Taliban kill at least 48 in bloody day ahead of Afghan polls

Sep 17, 2019 - 5:43 PM

(3rd UPDATE) In a statement claiming responsibility for both blasts, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid says the attack near President Ashraf Ghani's rally was deliberately aimed at disrupting the September 28 elections

ANOTHER BLAST. A wounded Afghan man is wheeled on a stretcher at the Wazir Akbar Khan hospital following a blast in Kabul on September 17, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Afghan Taliban rescind ban on Red Cross

Sep 15, 2019 - 4:23 PM

The Taliban also restores security guarantees for those working for the ICRC

RED CROSS. In this file photo, an Afghan resident walks at the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) hospital in Herat province on August 17, 2014. Aref Karimi/AFP

Afghanistan's Taliban sends warning to Trump in bitter exchange

Sep 12, 2019 - 9:57 PM

'Trump must tread carefully. He has yet to grasp the type of nation he is dealing with,' says Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid

SUICIDE ATTACK. Afghan National Army solders inspect the site of a suicide car bomb attack near a base of elite Afghan special forces in Char Asiab district, south of the capital Kabul on September 12, 2019. Photo by STR/AFP

On 9/11, Trump vows to hit Taliban 'harder' than ever

Sep 11, 2019 - 11:17 PM

In his Pentagon speech, President Donald Trump also issues a threat against militants ever attacking on US soil again, saying the response would be unlike any ever seen before

9/11. US President Donald Trump speaks during a 9/11 memorial ceremony at the Pentagon to commemorate the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks September 11, 2019 in Arlington, Virginia. Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images/AFP

Taliban vows to fight on after Trump says talks are 'dead'

Sep 10, 2019 - 4:32 PM

The renewed war of words between the two sides raises the specter of violence in Afghanistan as Trump and the Taliban pledge to take the fight to each other

DONALD TRUMP. In this file photo taken on September 4, 2019 US President Donald Trump updates the media on Hurricane Dorian preparedness from the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, DC. Photo by Jim Watson/AFP

U.S., Taliban keep open door to talks after summit scrapped

Sep 09, 2019 - 9:36 AM

Washington says it would not relent in fighting the militants after US President Donald Trump blames the scuttling of the meeting on a Taliban attack that killed a US soldier

MIKE POMPEO. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrives on September 3, 2019 at the European Parliament in Brussels for a meeting with European Parliament President. Photo by Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP

Taliban says U.S. 'will be harmed more than anyone' after Trump halts talks

Sep 08, 2019 - 9:54 PM

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid says that their 'fight for the past 18 years should have proven to the Americans that we will not be satisfied until we witness the complete end of the occupation'

On again, off again: Erratic history of talks with the Taliban

Sep 08, 2019 - 5:31 PM

Washington has tried to obtain promises from the Taliban, resulting in a tragic series of missed opportunities and all but guaranteeing suspicion around any new deal

TALKS. In this file photo, Markus Potzel (2nd-L), Germany' Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Mutlaq bin Majid al-Qahtani (4th-L), the special envoy of the Qatari Foreign Minister for Terrorism and Mediation in the Settlement of Disputes, attend the Intra Afghan Dialogue talks in the Qatari capital Doha on July 7, 2019. Photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP

In bombshell, Trump calls off secret summit, talks with Taliban

Sep 08, 2019 - 8:25 AM

(3rd UPDATE) The US President hits the Taliban for claiming responsibility for a deadly car bombing in Kabul amid ongoing peace negotiations

PEACE DEAL NO MORE? US President Donald Trump gestures as he speaks to the press while departing the White House in Washington, DC, on August 23, 2019, for the G7 Summit in France. Photo by Alastair Pike/AFP

Kabul blast toll rises as U.S. tries to finalize Taliban deal

Sep 03, 2019 - 12:04 PM

(UPDATED) The bombing is the third major Taliban attack in as many days – and the violence is likely to continue, Taliban expert Rahimullah Yusufzai says

Afghan security forces arrive at the site of a suicide attack near a security forces base on the outskirts of Kunduz on September 2, 2019. The US and the Taliban are on the brink of striking a deal after 18 years of war, Washington's top negotiator said on September 2, ahead of a visit to Afghanistan where fresh violence rocked the north. STR / AFP

U.S. to pull troops from 5 Afghan bases under deal with Taliban

Sep 02, 2019 - 11:56 PM

'We have agreed that if the conditions proceed according to the agreement, we will leave within 135 days 5 bases in which we are present now,' says US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad

WHAT'S IN THE DEAL? In this file photo taken on February 08, 2019, US Special Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad participates in a discussion on 'The Prospects for Peace in Afghanistan' at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, DC. File photo by Jim Watson/AFP

Afghan forces claim upper hand after Taliban attack Kunduz city

Sep 01, 2019 - 2:56 PM

The attack comes as US and Taliban negotiators continue a 9th round of talks in Doha

IN KUNDUZ. Afghan soldiers gather at a street in Kunduz, Afghanistan on August 31, 2019. Photo by Bashir Khan Safi/AFP

U.S., Taliban on 'threshold' of deal – U.S. Afghan envoy

Sep 01, 2019 - 9:31 AM

Washington's special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad says the deal would help foster 'a unified, sovereign Afghanistan that does not threaten the United States, its allies, or any other country'

SHORAB CAMP. A US Marine looks on as Afghan National Army soldiers raise the Afghan National flag on an armed vehicle during a training exercise to deal with IEDs at the Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province on August 28, 2017. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Trump: U.S. to keep 8,600 troops in Afghanistan after deal with Taliban

Aug 29, 2019 - 10:46 PM

'We're always going to have a presence,' says President Donald Trump

US TROOPS. In this photo taken on June 6, 2019, US soldiers look out over hillsides during a visit of the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Scott Miller at the Afghan National Army (ANA) checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. File photo by Thomas Watkins/AFP

U.S.-Taliban deal 'close,' insurgents claim

Aug 28, 2019 - 11:46 PM

'We are close to an agreement. We hope to bring good news for our Muslim and freedom seeking nation soon,' says Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid

KABUL. A general view of the capital city of Kabul is pictured on August 3, 2019, as talks between the US and the Taliban occur. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Fears in U.S. of bad peace deal with the Taliban

Aug 18, 2019 - 9:52 AM

In tweets, interviews, and op-ed pieces in newspapers, Americans caution against bringing home the 14,000 United States troops in Afghanistan

WITHDRAWAL WOES. In this photo taken on June 6, 2019, US soldiers look out over hillsides during a visit of the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Scott Miller at the Afghan National Army checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. Photo by Thomas Watkins/AFP

Latest round of U.S.-Taliban talks finishes

Aug 12, 2019 - 3:57 PM

'Work was tedious & effective. Both sides agreed to consult their respective leaderships for next steps,' Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid says on Twitter

KABUL. A general view of the capital city of Kabul is pictured on August 3, 2019, as talks between the US and the Taliban occur. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Taliban threaten Afghan presidential elections

Aug 06, 2019 - 9:27 PM

Many observers think the poll will be postponed again – it has already been pushed back twice this year – to create space for a peace deal to be finalized between the US and the Taliban

AFGHAN ELECTIONS. A local residents pushes a wheelbarrow past a billboard with a poster of Afghan presidential candidate and incumbent President of Afghanistan Ashraf Ghani (C) is seen during the first day of the presidential election campaign in Kabul on July 28,2019. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S., Taliban push for peace in day 2 of talks

Aug 04, 2019 - 10:44 AM

Efforts are underway to organize a meeting between US envoy for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban co-founder Mullah Baradar

SHORAB CAMP. A US Marine looks on as Afghan National Army soldiers raise the Afghan National flag on an armed vehicle during a training exercise to deal with IEDs at the Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province on August 28, 2017. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S. eyes breakthrough in push for peace with Taliban

Aug 03, 2019 - 5:33 PM

(UPDATED) The United States wants to withdraw thousands of troops but only in return for the insurgent group renouncing Al-Qaeda and curbing attacks

PEACE TALKS. In this photo taken on June 6, 2019, US soldiers look out over hillsides during a visit of the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Scott Miller at the Afghan National Army (ANA) checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. A skinny tangle of razor wire snakes across the entrance to the Afghan army checkpoint, the only obvious barrier separating the soldiers inside from any Taliban fighters that might be nearby. Photo by Thomas Watkins/AFP

At least 34 killed as Afghan bus hits 'Taliban' bomb

Jul 31, 2019 - 2:11 PM

(UPDATED) The blast rips through a passenger bus on a main highway in Farah province, at around 0130 GMT, authorities say, killing mainly women and children

ROADSIDE BUS BOMBING. An Afghan man injured when a bus hit a roadside bomb on the Kandahar-Herat highway is treated by medical staff at a hospital in Herat on July 31, 2019. Photo by Hoshang Hashimi/AFP

Afghan-Taliban talks could happen within two weeks – minister

Jul 27, 2019 - 11:45 PM

Afghan state minister for peace affairs Abdul Salam Rahimi says the government is preparing for 'direct talks' with Taliban

CEASEFIRE. Afghan Taliban militants ride a motorbike as they took to the street to celebrate ceasefire on the second day of Eid in the outskirts of Jalalabad on June 16, 2018. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Majority of U.S. vets say Afghanistan war 'not worth fighting' – survey

Jul 11, 2019 - 10:36 AM

The survey results come as the US and the Taliban engage in talks on bringing to a close the conflict which Washington launched in the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States

In this photo taken on June 6, 2019, US soldiers look out over hillsides during a visit of the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Scott Miller at the Afghan National Army (ANA) checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. A skinny tangle of razor wire snakes across the entrance to the Afghan army checkpoint, the only obvious barrier separating the soldiers inside from any Taliban fighters that might be nearby. THOMAS WATKINS / AFP