Taliban militants entered the Afghan capital of Kabul on Sunday, after a whirlwind advance that saw them take most of the country’s provinces and cities – some without firing a shot – on the heels of the US military withdrawal. Amid negotiations to surrender, US-backed President Ashraf Ghani departed shortly afterwards, reportedly bound for Tajikistan.
By Sunday evening, Taliban commanders told Reuters they had entered Ghani’s presidential palace and taken control of the building. Their claim has not been confirmed by Ghani’s government.
Though Taliban leaders and representatives of Ghani’s government had been participating in peace talks in Qatar for several months, a power-sharing deal had evidently not been reached before Ghani took off. Two officials from the Islamist group told Reuters there would be no transitional government, and it expects a complete handover of power.
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