The Taliban took three more provincial capitals on August 12th, giving them control of twelve out of thirty-four total. Many other capital cities are under siege. Most of the southwest and Northeast are under Taliban control. It is being reported by the AFP that officials from Kabul have offered the Taliban delegation in Qatar a “power-sharing” agreement.
The second-largest city Kandahar was partially stormed today, as was Herat, the fourth largest city.
The third-largest city, Mazar-i-Sharif, is putting up resistance to the Taliban. The government is giving weapons to ethnic Uzbek militias to fight the Taliban. Many believe that if Mazar-i-Sharif falls, it is all over, and the Taliban will take control of the entire country.
The Taliban claims to control well over 50% of all districts in Afghanistan.
It is clear that since the US invasion, the Taliban has made dramatic gains in winning support among the Tajiks and Uzbeks, their former enemies.
Kunduz, 5th largest city, 374k, capital of Kunduz province, mostly Pashtun
Taliban had been entering Kunduz in large numbers since 2015 and appears to have major support in the city. Until August 11th, the Afghan army still controlled the large and Kunduz airport. The airport is at a high elevation south of city and was supposed to be easily defendable. The Afghani military and security forces surrendered their arms and were allowed to evacuate.
Lashkargar, 190k, capital of Helmand Province, majority Pashtun
The Taliban took control of Lashkargar on August 12th after a few days of fighting.
Sheberghan, 185k, capital of Jowzjan Province, mostly Uzbek
Sheberghan was allegedly taken with little or no fight. Afghan security forces are said to have ditched their uniforms and deserted. This is considered the second most important Uzbek city. The head of the Province is said to have defected to the Taliban.
Ghazni, 180k, capital of Ghazni Province, Half Tajik, with the rest Pashtun and Hazara
The Taliban took Ghazni on August 12th. Very little resistance was reported. The governor and other Afghan leaders were allowed to surrender and leave the city peacefully. The governor of Ghazni was taken into custody by the Afghan military on a road east of the city.
Aybak, 120k, capital of Samangan Province, two-thirds Tajik and one third Uzbek
Formerly a center of resistance to the Taliban in the 90s.
Qala e Naw, 65k, capital of Baghdis Province, mostly Tajik
The Taliban took control of the city on August 12th. Fighting had been going on outside the city off and on since early July.
Taloqan, 64k, capital of Takhar Province, mostly Uzbek
Taliban forces entered the city and freed prisoners from the jail. Security forces are said to have mostly fled.
Puli Khumri, 60k, capital of the Baghlan Province, Uzbek, and Tajik
The Taliban took the city on August 10th after days of fighting.
Farah, 54k, capital of Farah Province, majority Pashtun. Tajiks are the second largest group.
Taliban seized Farah on August 10th. The governor of Farah declared that security forces were repelling the Taliban and then five hours later said the city had fallen.
Zaranj, 50k, capital of Nimruz Province, Nearly half Baloch, with Pashtun the second largest ethnic group
Taliban is said to have taken the city with little or no fight.
Sari Pul, 50k, capital of Sari Pul Province, a mix of Tajik and Uzbek
Taliban took the city on August 9th.
Fayzabad, 50k, capital of Badakhshan Province, Majority Tajik
The Taliban seized the city on August 11th after several days of fighting.
#UPDATE The Afghan government handed a proposal to Taliban negotiators in Qatar on Thursday offering a power-sharing deal in return for an end to fighting, according to a member of the government’s team in Doha who asked not to be named https://t.co/xWZ8FFyLcv pic.twitter.com/lEN9Pez47C
— AFP News Agency (@AFP) August 12, 2021