17 Killed in Kabul as Taliban Fires Weapons to Celebrate 'Taking Over Panjshir'
However, resistance leaders Amrullah Saleh and Ahmad Massoud have denied reports of the takeover.
At least 17 people have been killed in Kabul by the Taliban, an official at Emergency Hospital in Kabul told Reuters.
Taliban reportedly fired guns into the air on Friday night after the Panjshir valley reportedly fell to the militant group amid resistance.
“By the grace of Allah Almighty, we are in control of the entire Afghanistan. The troublemakers have been defeated and Panjshir is now under our command,” a Taliban commander was quoted telling Reuters.
Massoud, however, said that the news is being circulated only in the Pakistan media to peddle lies. Amrullah Saleh, the former vice president of the country, who has now declared himself the caretaker president, said the resistance has so far not given up.
"The RESISTANCE is continuing and will continue. I am here with my soil, for my soil & defending its dignity (sic)," Saleh tweeted along with a video message.
Fighting has been underway between the Taliban fighters and the resistance forces led by Massoud in the Panjshir province for days, and both sides have suffered heavy casualties, as per reports. At least 400 families have reportedly left their villages.
"Mujahideen of the Islamic Emirate were attacked from some circles in Panjshir who bluff and say they will resist. The Mujahideen reacted to the attack and as a result the other side has suffered heavy casualties," said Anaamullah Samangani, a member of the Taliban's cultural commission, as quoted by IANS on Thursday, 2 September.
Fighting between Taliban fighters and rebel forces in the Panjshir valley continued on Saturday. “The fighting has gotten worse and worse with each night,” a resident of the valley told Al Jazeera.
However, leaders of the resistance were quoted by the news agency as saying that they "pushed back" and that the Taliban has also suffered heavy casualties.
(With inputs from Reuters)
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