Monday, August 2, 2021

Last US and Nato forces leave Afghanistan’s Bagram airbase

The last US and Nato forces have left Afghanistan’s Bagram airbase, the centre of the war against militants for some 20 years. This was informed by the US officials.

The pull-out could signal that the complete withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan is imminent. The withdrawal from the sprawling base, north of Kabul, comes as the main jihadist group, the Taliban, advances in many parts of Afghanistan.

President Joe Biden has said US forces will be gone by 11th September. The 11th September deadline is the anniversary of the attacks on America in 2001, which killed nearly 3,000 people.

The attacks were carried out by Al-Qaeda, an international jihadist group then based in Afghanistan with the support of the Taliban, who had been in control of the country since the 1990s. A US-led coalition invaded Afghanistan later that year to defeat both the groups.

America now wants to end its longest war with its huge cost in human lives and vast expense, and is leaving security to the Afghan government.

Some 2,500-3,500 US troops were thought to be still in Afghanistan until recently and when they depart, lesser than 1,000 American soldiers will remain. As of May there were about 7,000 other coalition troops in Afghanistan but it is believed that most have now left, with Germany and Italy declaring their missions over on Wednesday.

A resurgent Taliban, buoyed by the expectation of the foreign withdrawal, has overrun dozens of districts, amidst fears that a new civil war could erupt after the departure of foreign forces.

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