Taliban destroy statue of foe, stoking fear over their rule

Taliban destroy statue of foe, stoking fear over their rule
Taliban fighters pose for photograph in Wazir Akbar Khan in the city of Kabul, Afghanistan, Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2021. Source: AP
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Daily US Times: According to photos circulating on Wednesday, the Taliban have blown up the statue of a Shiite militia leader who fought against them during Afghanistan’s civil war in the 1990s.

Photos of demolishing the statue show further doubt about Taliban’s claims to have become more moderate.

Every action of Taliban’s sudden sweep to power is being watched closely. They insist they have changed and would not impose the same draconian restrictions they did in their last reign, all but carrying out public executions, eliminating women’s rights and banning television and music.

The insurgents’ also promised not to seek revenge against those who have opposed them.

But many Afghans remain deeply skeptical about Taliban’s claims, and thousands are racing to the borders and airport to flee the country. Many others are hiding inside their homes, fearful after armories and prisons were emptied during the insurgents’ blitz across Afghanistan.

Groups of fighters carrying long guns patrolled a well-to-do neighborhood of Kabul, on Wednesday, that is home to many embassies as well as mansions of the Afghan elite. The group has promised to maintain security in the country, but many Afghans are as afraid of them as they are of potential chaos.

In a rare show of protest against Taliban, dozens of people in the eastern city of Jalalabad gathered and raised the Afghan national flag in an anti-Taliban demonstration, a local resident said.

Salim Ahmed said the Taliban fighters fired in the air to disperse the crowd, but there were no immediate reports of any casualties.

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