The Taliban have declared the war in Afghanistan over after its fighters swept into the capital, Kabul, and President Ashraf Ghani fled the country saying he wanted to avoid bloodshed.
A spokesman for Taliban’s political office declared the war over in Afghanistan and called for peaceful relations with the international community.
The spokesman for the Taliban’s political office, Mohammad Naeem, told Al Jazeera, “Thanks to God, the war is over in the country. Today is a great day for the Afghan people. They have witnessed the fruits of their efforts and their sacrifices for 20 years.”
Naeem said the type and form of the new regime in Afghanistan would be made clear soon, adding the Taliban did not want to live in isolation.
Meanwhile, there was panic on the streets of Kabul today as heavily armed Taliban fighters took control of the abandoned presidential palace and Western nations scrambled to evacuate their citizens.
Hundreds of Afghans desperate to leave the country also flooded the Kabul airport.
A US official told the Reuters news agency that most Western diplomats have now left the Afghan capital. Helicopters have been ferrying diplomats from the embassy district in the city to Kabul airport since yesterday, when the Taliban entered the city.
Dozens of countries from around the world are calling on all involved in events in Afghanistan to respect and facilitate the departure of foreign nationals and Afghans who wish to leave the country.
More than 60 nations released a joint statement citing what they call “the deteriorating security situation” in Afghanistan.