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Afghanistan replaces army chief as UN warns of humanitarian disaster

Afghanistan updates

The Afghan governing administration has changed its army main for the third time in just in excess of a year, highlighting the disarray in the country as the Taliban sweeps aside the government’s safety forces.

General Wali Mohammad Ahmadzai, who was only appointed army main in June, was changed on Wednesday by Normal Hibatullah Alizai as the Taliban pushed nearer to encircling Kabul and forcing the surrender of President Ashraf Ghani’s govt

As the US prepares to withdraw the previous of its troops, the Islamist rebels have captured 9 provincial capitals and seized handle of Kunduz airport.

Combating is raging around the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif, when a bastion of anti-Taliban resistance, and the city of Ghazni, which is strategically found on the freeway from western Afghanistan to Kabul.

Lots of analysts ended up sceptical that leadership variations in the armed forces would do considerably to bolster Afghan troops, many of whom look to have melted absent in the facial area of the insurgents’ onslaught.

“It’s truly late in the day for some thing like this to make a difference,” a senior Pakistani formal instructed the Financial Occasions.

Afghans fleeing the significant fighting as effectively as punishments meted out by the Taliban have sparked warnings from the UN of an imminent humanitarian disaster. The UN estimated in late July that 270,000 folks experienced been displaced this yr by the conflict.

Michelle Bachelet, UN substantial commissioner for human rights, warned that “the by now atrocious circumstance for so a lot of Afghans will develop into so substantially worse” if hostilities do not stop.

Critics have blamed the US decision to withdraw from Bagram air base and pull out its troops for the Taliban’s fast gains.

But diplomats mentioned the insurgent team had been gaining ground slowly but surely on Afghan security forces even when the national military relished the total logistic assistance of US troops and air protect.

“Are we stunned that a power that was just about trying to keep up with the Taliban starts off to crumble? Obviously not,” explained a western diplomat.

The US has been urgent Pakistan to use its affect on the Taliban to broker a peace deal. But Washington’s marriage with Islamabad has deteriorated.

Last week, Imran Khan’s stability adviser complained that Joe Biden experienced not bothered to phone Pakistan’s primary minister.

On Wednesday, Khan mentioned the US thought of his region valuable only “in the context of by some means settling this mess which has been still left at the rear of just after 20 decades of trying to discover a army resolution when there was not one”.

Pakistan has extensive performed an ambiguous part in Afghanistan. Washington and the Afghan governing administration think Islamabad has covertly supported the Taliban, even while publicly proclaiming its support for a US-backed peace procedure.

Fawad Chaudhry, Pakistan’s info minister, told reporters: “The people of Afghanistan and the United States must inquire their governments just what use arrived from around $1tn that the US used on the Afghan war. Why is the Afghan military coming aside like leaves?”

Biden reported this 7 days he did not regret his decision to withdraw US troops and that Afghans ought to unite to battle the Taliban, who are shifting to reinstate strict Islamic legislation in areas they have captured.

Extra reporting by Farhan Bokhari in Islamabad

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