YACINEWS
World

Taliban announce first ceasefire since 2001 to mark end of Ramadan


The Taliban have announced a ceasefire in Afghanistan over the Eid al-Fitr holiday for the first time since 2001 (Picture: AFP/Getty)

The Taliban have announced a ceasefire in Afghanistan over the Eid al-Fitr holiday for the first time since 2001.

It will see a three-day halt in hostilities against the country’s security forces, which has been greeted with relief by war-weary Afghans.

But the group warned the suspension of fighting for the first three days of Eid, the holiday that caps off Ramadan, did not extend to ‘foreign occupiers’, who would continue to be targeted by the militants.

The unexpected move came two days after the Afghan government’s own surprise announcement of a week-long halt to operations against the Taliban.

It is the first time in nearly 17 years of conflict that the militants have declared a ceasefire, albeit a limited one.

epa06791513 Afghan security officials stand guard at a check point in Kandahar, Afghanistan, 07 June 2018. Afghan president Ashraf Ghani announced that a temporary ceasefire had been struck with the Taliban, involved in the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan. The conflict in Afghanistan remains in a stagnant situation following the end of NATO's military mission in the country in early 2015 which initially helped the Taliban make military advances territorially. The government controls about 56 percent of the territory, while the Taliban control around 11 percent, according to data from the United States. EPA/MUHAMMAD SADIQ

‘All the mujahideen are directed to stop offensive operations against Afghan forces for the first three days of Eid-al-Fitr,’ the Taliban said in a WhatsApp message to journalists (Picture: EPA)

‘All the mujahideen are directed to stop offensive operations against Afghan forces for the first three days of Eid-al-Fitr,’ the Taliban said in a WhatsApp message to journalists.

But it added that ‘if the mujahideen are attacked we will strongly defend (ourselves)’.

The Taliban said ‘foreign occupiers are the exception’ to the order sent to its fighters around the country.

‘Our operations will continue against them, we will attack them wherever we see them,’ it said.

Hours before Saturday’s announcement, Taliban militants launched two separate assaults on Afghan security forces in the western province of Herat and the northern province of Kunduz, killing at least 36 soldiers and police, officials said.

Even a brief cessation of hostilities would bring welcome relief to civilians in the war-torn country, where they are paying a disproportionate price in casualties as a result of the conflict.

Source: http://metro.co.uk/2018/06/09/taliban-announce-first-ceasefire-since-2001-to-mark-end-of-ramadan-7618249

Related posts

North and South Korea to go into same time zone in show of unity

yacinews

Alfie Evans survives night after life-support machine was turned off last night

Denmark bans burkas and niqabs in public places

Jane Wharton

Leave a Comment