Last US troops leave Afghanistan, ending 20-year war

Kabul, Afghanistan / Stock photo by Qais Musafer for flickr

Ending the 20-year war, the longest in American history, the United States completed its withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan yesterday, leaving the country in hands of the Taliban. The Islamic militant group swiftly took over the country’s capital, Kabul, earlier this month.

Gunshots were fired in celebration after the last US soldiers left Afghanistan. In an Al Jazeera TV yesterday, Taliban spokesman Qari Yusuf said Afghanistan had gained “complete independence.”

“The last U.S. soldier has left Kabul airport and our country gained complete independence.”

Over the past two weeks, the US has led hasty and chaotic evacuations to get as many people as possible out of the country by the end of the month, but tens of thousands of Afghans who supported Western countries are still in Afghanistan.

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Some Americans were not able to get on the last flights out of Afghanistan. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken estimates that around 100 to 200 Americans are still in the country.

With the US military no longer occupying the Kabul, the US Federal Aviation Administration says the airport is without air traffic control services and US civil aircraft are barred from flying over the country, unless they are given permission.

“Due to both the lack of air traffic services and a functional civil aviation authority in Afghanistan, as well as ongoing security concerns, US civil operators, pilots, and US-registered civil aircraft are prohibited from operating at any altitude over much of Afghanistan.”

SOURCE: Reuters

World News

Tanutam Thawan

Local Thai journalist speaking fluent Thai and English. Tanutam studied in Khon Kaen before attending Bangkok’s Chulalongkhorn University.

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