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Taliban LIVE: 9,000 rebel forces amass in strategic valley – Lion of Panjshir leads fight

Afghanistan: Richard Kemp 'You have to point finger at Biden'

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The National Resistance Front (NRF), based in the strategic resistance ground of Panjshir, has assembled around 9,000 soldiers who are preparing to take on the Taliban. They are performing strict fitness regimes and a handful of armoured humvees have been seen patrolling the valley, photos taken by AFP revealed. Their main goal is to push for decentralisation, a system that guarantees equality, freedom, rights and social justice for all.

A spokesman for the NRF, Ali Maisam Nazary, has promised if the Taliban refuses to negotiate, they will face stubborn resistance across the country.

Mr Nazary told AFP: “The Taliban are overstretched.

“They cannot be everywhere at the same time.

“Their resources are limited and they do not have support amongst the majority.”

He added that many local militias which were not initially part of the NRF forces have now formed an alliance with them to coordinate a rebellion.

The Taliban declared victory in Afghanistan on August 15 after capturing the capital city Kabul and sending the former President Ashraf Ghani fleeing.

US President Joe Biden blamed the hard-line Islamist militants’ blistering rise to power on the Afghan army’s apparent lack of willingness to fight and the politicians who abandoned their government.

Former defence minister General Bismillah Mohammadi tweeted on Sunday that the Panjshir province refused to surrender and would continue to resist the feared Taliban rule.

The rebellion is being led by the son of assassinated anti-Taliban fighter Ahmad Shah Massoud, who was known as the Lion of Panjshir and led the strongest resistance against the Taliban from his stronghold in the valley.

Ahmad Massoud reportedly told French philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy: “I am the son of Ahmad Shah Massoud; surrender is not part of my vocabulary.

The resistance has begun.”

This rallying cry comes amid reports that the Taliban will now launch an attack to crush the resistance and capture Panjshir, the area which has been the ground of resistance since the Afghan-Soviet war.

Around 1,000 displaced people flocked to the region after the Taliban’s meteoric rise to power as the valley is believed to be safe from the militants.

The first priority of the NRF is to defend Panjshir and its people, according to the spokesman.


07:56 UK to threaten Taliban with sanctions

The U.K. is set to urge other G7 countries to consider sanctions against the Taliban if they commit human rights abuses or allow Afghanistan to once again become a haven for terrorists, according to Reuters reporters.

Asked last night whether he would consider sanctions, US President Joe Biden replied: “Yes. It depends on their conduct.”

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