The Taliban and the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan continued to battle out in the Panjshir valley with both sides claiming an upper hand. While the Taliban said they have captured key districts, resistance forces said they killed over 700 Taliban fighters.
The battle for Panjshir, the last province out of the Taliban’s control, continued on Saturday as both the Taliban and the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan claimed the upper hand.
While the Taliban claimed to have entered Bazarak, the capital of Panjshir province and stormed the provincial governor’s office, the National Resistance Front said Taliban fighters were pushed back at the borders of Kapisa province and Panjshir.
The Taliban also claimed that they have entered the Anaba district after capturing the Shutul district of Panjshir, according to Asvaka News Agency.
Taliban spokesman Bilal Karimi said the districts of Khinj and Unabah had been taken, giving Taliban forces control of four of the province’s seven districts.
“The Mujahideen (Taliban fighters) are advancing toward the center (of the province),” he said on Twitter.
A Taliban source told Al Jazeera that the fighting was continuing in Panjshir but the advance had been slowed by landmines on the road to the capital Bazarak and the provincial governor’s compound.
دشمن در منطقه دالانسنگ شکست خورد. اشغال عنابه و خنج #پنجشیر هیچ واقعیت ندارد. قهرمانان مجرب و جدید نیروهای مقاومت در خط مقدم جبههها حضور پیدا کردهاند. رزمندگان آزادی مدبرانه با روحیه بالا آماده هر نوع حمله و یورش هستند. تهاجم دشمن ذبون مثل همیشه ناکام و محکوم به شکست است. pic.twitter.com/EZLbp5eUJT
— Fahim Dashti فهیم دشتی (@FahimDashty) September 4, 2021
Resistance forces claim upper hand
The National Resistance Front said it surrounded “thousands of terrorists” in Khawak pass and the Taliban had abandoned vehicles and equipment in the Dashte Rewak area. In a tweet, the resistance forces also claimed that more than 700 Taliban fighters were killed, 600 captured and imprisoned.
This video published from Panjshir province showing a convoy of the Taliban with white flag moving out. People on the background say, Taliban escaping from Panjshir. pic.twitter.com/gs2LuFkHuL
— Tajuden Soroush (@TajudenSoroush) September 4, 2021
Panjshir is the stronghold of the National Resistance Front, led by Ahmad Massoud, the son of late ex-Afghan guerrilla commander Ahmad Shah Massoud, and ex-vice president Amrullah Saleh, who had declared himself caretaker president of Afghanistan after Ashraf Ghani fled the country.