South Asian Views On Global News - Update 24X7

Panjshir Valley: The fate of anti-Taliban resistance is important for the whole world


Visa-Home Ad

After a stunningly rapid offensive, the Taliban has occupied Kabul with minimal resistance and is consolidating its power across Afghanistan. But one unconquered area remains – Panjshir province in the country’s northwest, which has – over more than four decades – proved stubbornly resistant to outside interference and remains defiant in the face of Taliban dominance.


On August 15, as the Taliban were closing in on Kabul, the president, Ashraf Ghani – who had previously promised to “fight to the death” – quietly fled the country, which precipitated the government’s collapse. His vice-president, Amrullah Saleh – a fierce critic of the Taliban – decided to stay on and move to his birthplace, Panjshir.

Panjshir Valley, nearly 150km north of Kabul, is home to a largely ethnic Tajik population and through four decades of civil war and Taliban insurgency has been a centre of resistance. Panjshir resisted the Soviet invasion in the 1980s and Taliban rule during the late 1990s. In the past 20 years, it was the only province that the predominantly ethnic Pashtun Taliban seemed unable to penetrate.

Panjshir’s elites have played an important role in the post-2001 political order put in place by the United States-led intervention. It has been a stronghold to all main opposition presidential contenders since 2004, including Abdullah Abdullah, a senior…

Read more

Replica of Print on your device!

CLICK & Send us 'hi' for Free Subscription

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

gtag('set', {'user_id': 'USER_ID'}); // Set the user ID using signed-in user_id.