Forces loyal to former Afghan Vice President Amrullah Saleh have been implicated in clashes with Taliban insurgents in Panjir, north of Kabul, the only area not under the control of Islamist insurgents, Al-Alam television reported on Tuesday.
According to his information, Mr. Saleh's forces recaptured the area of Tsarikar, in the province of Parwan. A strategically important road passes through Tsarikar and the Salang Tunnel, which connects Kabul with Mazar-i-Sharif, the largest city in northern Afghanistan.
An Afghan military source said Abdul Rashid Dostum, a notorious Afghan warlord, had deployed 10,000 fighters in Panjir.
The former vice president and former head of the intelligence service has vowed not to surrender, and on Tuesday he declared himself legitimate president after head of state Ashraf Ghani left the country on Sunday as the Taliban entered Kabul.
“According to the Constitution of Afghanistan, in case of absence, departure, resignation or death of the president, the first vice-president becomes a transitional president. I am currently in my country and I am the legitimate interim president. “I call on all leaders to offer their support and consent,” he said in a Twitter post in English yesterday. He called on Afghans to join the “resistance” against the Taliban.
Pictures of the former vice president with Ahmad Massoud – the son of prominent al-Qaeda leader Ahmad Sa Massoud, who was assassinated by al-Qaeda in 2001 as a major source of information for the CIA – were uploaded to social media sites in the Pant Valley. the mountain range of Hindu Kush.
Ahmad Massoud, in an article published this week in the French review La Règle, clarified that he meant to resist the Taliban, to make “his own” the struggle of his father, who had fought both against and against Soviet forces. of the Islamist movement.
The extremely inaccessible valley of Panjir never fell to the Taliban during the civil war in the 1990s; it had not even fallen to Soviet troops in the previous decade.