The Taliban has confirmed that the temporary cease-fire with the Afghan government will in fact come to an end as planned. The cease-fire marked the end of Ramadan, and while Afghan President Ashraf Ghani proposed a more lengthy truce, the Taliban would only accept one for the duration of Afghanistan’s celebration of Eid al-Fitr.
In a statement, the Taliban said that, “Mujahideen throughout the country are ordered to continue their operations against the foreign invaders and their internal puppets as before.” “Puppets” is a word they use to describe Afghan military service members working alongside the United States, who of course are the “foreign invaders” referenced, along with other NATO forces. In the same statement (which can be read here), they are continuously insistent on installing Sharia law throughout Afghanistan.
President Ghani knew the cease-fire would end, but he has expressed hopes that a taste of peace in a never-ending cycle of war will inspire further efforts toward those ends. Celebrations were had across the nation, and fighters from the Taliban as well as Afghan soldiers were seen embracing and enjoying a brief time of peace. Hundreds took to the streets of Kabul and there was singing and dancing, as well as food.
If the ceasefire continues, this will allow everyone to share their resources in order to help the people who are affected, so our desire for peace and prosperity will be truly realized.
— Ashraf Ghani (@ashrafghani) June 16, 2018
Recently, violence has erupted in Jalalabad. 18 people were killed in an attack only a single day after 36 were killed from a suicide bomber. The Taliban have not claimed responsibility for these attacks.
While (in the same statement regarding the end of the Eid cease-fire) they claim that “The Islamic Emirate (the Taliban) leads Jihad across the country and all combatants strictly follow their orders,” there are many attacks that they don’t claim. It may be when the attacks are unauthorized and out of their control, or when children are killed and it would be bad public relations to claim the attack. Specific reasoning is just conjecture, but there are a significant number of attacks that remain unclaimed by Taliban leadership.
The parade previously mentioned was actually triggered by a suicide attack in Helmand province, and the people in Kabul were expressing how tired they are of the war.
Featured image: Taliban fighters ride in their vehicle in Surkhroad district of Nangarhar province, east of Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, June 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gal)