Taliban - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Taliban

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White House says Trump 'does read' intel briefs

Jul 01, 2020 - 10:59 AM

'The president is the most informed person on planet Earth when it comes to the threats that we face,' says White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany

GRIMACE. US President Donald Trump looks on prior to departing on Marine One from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC. Photo by Saul Loeb/AFP

Taliban reaffirm commitment to U.S. deal in Pompeo call

Jun 30, 2020 - 3:48 PM

The discussion comes as US President Donald Trump faces mounting pressure to explain why he did nothing after being reportedly told that Russian spies had offered and paid cash to Taliban-linked militants for killing US soldiers

MIKE POMPEO. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks at a press briefing at the State Department in Washington, DC, on April 22, 2020. File photo by Nicholas Kamm/AFP

Trump briefed on Russian bounties in February – report

Jun 30, 2020 - 2:15 PM

Trump is under increasing pressure to explain mounting reports saying he was informed Russian military intelligence had offered and paid cash to Taliban-linked militants for US soldiers' deaths – and did nothing in response

DONALD TRUMP. In this file photo taken on June 26, 2020 US President Donald Trump looks on during an American Workforce Policy Advisory Board Meeting in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC. Photo by Mandel Ngan/AFP

Trump says spies deemed Russia-Taliban intel not 'credible'

Jun 29, 2020 - 3:30 PM

US President Donald Trump criticizes the New York Times report on Russian activity in Afghanistan as 'probably just another phony Times hit job, just like their failed Russia Hoax'

TRUMP. US President Donald Trump salutes cadets at the 2020 US Military Academy graduation ceremony in West Point, New York. File photo by Timothy Clary/AFP

Trump denies he was briefed on Russia-Taliban bounty intelligence

Jun 28, 2020 - 8:46 PM

United States President Donald Trump slams the New York Times report, calling it 'another phony Times hit job'

US President Donald Trump participates in a roundtable on empowering families with education choice at the White House on December 9, 2019 in Washington,DC. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP)

Taliban reject claims Russia aided fighters in attacks on U.S. troops

Jun 27, 2020 - 11:23 PM

Taliban also denies that its weapons were given by Russia

ATTACK. In this file photo taken on August 27, 2017, US Marines and Afghan Commandos stand together as an Afghan Air Force helicopter flies past during a combat training exercise at Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S. thinks Russia spies aided Taliban attacks – report

Jun 27, 2020 - 8:49 AM

The purported bounties give incentives to the guerrillas to target US forces, just as President Donald Trump tries to withdraw troops and end America's longest war

Afghan Taliban militants and villagers attend a gathering as they celebrate the peace deal and their victory in the Afghan conflict on US in Afghanistan, in Alingar district of Laghman Province on March 2, 2020. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/ AFP

Taliban killed 291 Afghan security personnel in past week – gov't

Jun 22, 2020 - 11:50 PM

The past week was the 'deadliest' in the country's 19 years of conflict, says Javid Faisal, spokesman for the National Security Council

'DEADLIEST.' In this file photo, Afghan security personnel stand guard near the site of a car bomb targeting the National Directorate of Security unit in Ghazni on May 18, 2020. File photo by Zakeria Hashimi/AFP

Taliban says no threat to West as U.S. troops leave Afghanistan

Jun 19, 2020 - 9:16 PM

A deal signed in February holds that the United States would pull out all troops in return for security guarantees from the insurgents and a pledge to hold peace talks with Afghanistan

Afghan Taliban militants and villagers attend a gathering as they celebrate the peace deal and their victory in the Afghan conflict on US in Afghanistan, in Alingar district of Laghman Province on March 2, 2020. - The Taliban said on March 2 they were resuming offensive operations against Afghan security forces, ending the partial truce that preceded the signing of a deal between the insurgents and Washington. (Photo by NOORULLAH SHIRZADA / AFP)

Over 400 Afghan security personnel killed or wounded by Taliban in past week – gov't

Jun 14, 2020 - 7:02 PM

The accusations come after the government and Taliban signaled that they were getting closer to launching much delayed peace talks

Freed Taliban prisoners eye return to the battlefield

Jun 11, 2020 - 10:45 AM

A security official says those flagged by the Taliban for release include aspiring suicide bombers, suicide vest makers, kidnappers, and even foreign fighters

Afghan Taliban militants and villagers attend a gathering as they celebrate the peace deal and their victory in the Afghan conflict on US in Afghanistan, in Alingar district of Laghman Province on March 2, 2020. - The Taliban said on March 2 they were resuming offensive operations against Afghan security forces, ending the partial truce that preceded the signing of a deal between the insurgents and Washington. (Photo by NOORULLAH SHIRZADA / AFP)

U.S. launches 1st Taliban air strikes since Afghan ceasefire end

Jun 05, 2020 - 11:37 PM

US forces spokesman Sonny Leggett says the two assaults took place on Thursday, June 4, and Friday, June 5, in separate provinces in Afghanistan

AFTER CEASEFIRE. In this file photo, Afghan Taliban militants and villagers attend a gathering as they celebrate the peace deal and their victory in the Afghan conflict on US in Afghanistan, in Alingar district of Laghman Province on March 2, 2020. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Afghan forces killed in first 'Taliban attack' since ceasefire end

May 28, 2020 - 4:14 PM

The militants attack a checkpoint in Parwan, north Kabul, says a spokeswoman to the provincial governor. The Taliban have not commented.

An Afghan National Army (ANA) soldier escorts Taliban prisoners during their release from the Bagram prison,next to the US military base in Bagram, some 50 km north of Kabul. Afghan authorities plan to release 900 more Taliban prisoners on May 26, as calls grow for the militants to extend a ceasefire on its third and final day. WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP

Hundreds more Taliban prisoners freed on last day of Afghan truce

May 27, 2020 - 3:21 PM

Afghanistan authorities say they released about 900 Taliban prisoners across the country, approximately 600 of them from the notorious Bagram jail near Kabul

Taliban prisoners walk in line during their release from the Bagram prison, next to the US military base in Bagram, some 50 km north of Kabul. Afghan authorities plan to release 900 more Taliban prisoners on May 26, as calls grow for the militants to extend a ceasefire on its third and final day. WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP

Afghan gov't frees Taliban prisoners as truce holds for 2nd day

May 25, 2020 - 10:03 PM

President Ashraf Ghani says his administration is also ready to hold peace talks with the Taliban, seen as key to ending the war in the impoverished country

In this handout photo taken and released on April 11, 2020 by Afghanistan's (NDS) National Security Council, Taliban prisoners stand before being released from the Bagram prison next to the US military base in Bagram, some 50 km north of Kabul. - The Taliban said it would on April 12 release the first prisoners in a delayed exchange deal with the Afghan government -- a potential breakthrough after the insurgents walked out of talks with Kabul last week. (Photo by Handout / National Security Council (NDS) / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL (NDS)" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS

Afghan president vows to speed up release of Taliban prisoners

May 24, 2020 - 3:53 PM

He also urges the militants to press on with the release of the Afghan security personnel they hold

AFGHAN LEADER. Afghan's President Ashraf Ghani looks on during a bilateral meeting with US President Donald Trump at Bagram Air Field during a surprise Thanksgiving day visit, on November 28, 2019 in Afghanistan. Photo by Olivier Douliery/AFP

Afghan Taliban leader says committed to deal with U.S.

May 20, 2020 - 11:35 PM

In a rare message released ahead of the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, Haibatullah Akhundzada urges Washington 'not to waste' the opportunity offered by the deal to end America's longest war

DEAL. In this file photo, US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar shake hands after signing a peace agreement during a ceremony in the Qatari capital Doha on February 29, 2020. File photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP

Afghan forces repel Taliban attack on key city – officials

May 19, 2020 - 5:01 PM

Taliban fighters attack several outposts of Afghan forces on the outskirts of Kunduz at around 1:00 am, triggering fierce fighting

U.S. says Taliban fulfilling promises in Afghan withdrawal deal

May 16, 2020 - 2:02 PM

Recent violence violates the 'spirit' of the deal, says US negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad

(FILES) In this file photo taken on August 27, 2017 US Marines and Afghan Commandos stand together as an Afghan Air Force helicopter flies past during a combat training exercise at Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. - The United States has secured a seven-day reduction in violence in talks to help seek a negotiated settlement in Afghanistan, Pentagon chief Mark Esper said February 13, 2020. The announcement came as NATO defence ministers met in Brussels and a day after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani reported "notable progress" in negotiations with the Islamist insurgents."The United States and the Taliban have negotiated a proposal for a seven-day reduction in violence," Esper told reporters, dubbing his meetings with NATO colleagues "productive." (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP)

Taliban claim deadly attack on Afghan army base

May 14, 2020 - 8:16 PM

The defense ministry says a truck bomb targeted the base in the eastern city of Gardez, killing 5 civilians

DEADLY ATTACK. Afghan security personnel inspect the site of an attack on Afghan army base in Gardez, capital of Paktia province on May 14, 2020. Photo by STR/AFP

Taliban says ready to counter Afghan forces after deadly carnage

May 14, 2020 - 12:16 AM

'From now onwards the responsibility of further escalation of violence and its ramifications shall fall squarely on the shoulders of the Kabul administration,' the Taliban says in a statement

BURIAL. Mourners carry a covered dead body during a burial ceremony following a suicide attack in a maternity hospital, at a cemetery in Kabul on May 13, 2020. Photo by AFP

Afghan forces to resume offensive operations

May 13, 2020 - 12:19 AM

'I order all the security forces to end their active defense position, return to offensive postures, and resume their operations against the enemy,' says Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

ASHRAF GHANI. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani talks at the second Kabul Process conference at the Presidential Palace in Kabul on February 28, 2018. File photo by Shah Marai/AFP

U.S. envoy calls Afghan prisoner releases 'important step'

Apr 13, 2020 - 3:28 PM

According to the International Committee of the Red Cross, the Taliban releases 20 Afghan security-force prisoners, following the government's release of hundreds of insurgent captives

RELEASE. In this handout photo taken and released on April 11, 2020 by Afghanistan's (NDS) National Security Council, Taliban prisoners stand before being released from the Bagram prison next to the US military base in Bagram, some 50 km north of Kabul. Photo by National Security Council/AFP

Taliban set to release first prisoners in fragile Afghan exchange

Apr 12, 2020 - 6:46 PM

The Afghan government has pressed ahead with freeing hundreds of Taliban prisoners over the past week, despite complaints from the insurgent group about the piecemeal nature of the releases

Afghan government releases 100 Taliban prisoners

Apr 08, 2020 - 6:15 PM

(UPDATED) Afghanistan's Office of the National Security Council says the 100 prisoners freed on Wednesday, April 8, were 'thoroughly vetted' and had all taken an oath never to return to the battlefield

TALKS. A man wearing a face mask walks past a wall painted with images of US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad (L) and Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar (R), in Kabul April 5, 2020. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Taliban end 'fruitless' meetings with Afghan gov't over prisoner swap

Apr 08, 2020 - 8:46 AM

Matin Bek, a member of the government's negotiating team, says the release has been delayed because the Taliban are demanding the release of 15 'top commanders'

GATHERING. Members of the Taliban delegation gather ahead of the signing ceremony with the United States in the Qatari capital Doha, on February 29, 2020. Photo by Giuseppe Cacace/AFP

Gunmen storm Sikh-Hindu temple in ongoing Kabul assault

Mar 25, 2020 - 3:35 PM

The attack comes as Afghanistan is facing myriad crises including a raging insurgency, political deadlock, a massive cut in US aid, a flailing peace process and rising coronavirus cases

In this photograph taken on March 22, 2020 an Afghan policeman searches people travelling in a car at a road checkpoint in Kabul. WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP

Pompeo in Kabul to try to break political deadlock

Mar 23, 2020 - 8:12 PM

The visit comes just a day after the Afghan government and Taliban held their first discussion on prisoner exchanges – a key step in a broader push for peace

BREAK DEADLOCK. In this handout photograph taken and released by Press Office of President of Afghanistan on March 23, 2020, Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani speaks with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (L) during their meeting in Kabul. AFP PHOTO/Press Office of President of Afghanistan

Kabul to release 5,000 Taliban prisoners if violence eases

Mar 11, 2020 - 9:47 AM

A Taliban leader accuses Kabul of acting in bad faith, alleging that 'the government (planned) to release only those prisoners who are elderly, very ill, or those whose sentences have expired'

CEASEFIRE. Afghan Taliban militants ride a motorbike as they took to the street to celebrate ceasefire on the second day of Eid in the outskirts of Jalalabad on June 16, 2018. File photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Pentagon downplays new Taliban attacks

Mar 05, 2020 - 10:11 AM

'There's no high profile attacks, there's no suicide bombers, there's no vehicle-borne suicide, no attack against the US forces, no attack against the coalition,' says General Mark Milley

DISCUSSION. Members of the Taliban delegation gather ahead of the signing ceremony with the United States in the Qatari capital Doha, on February 29, 2020. Photo by Giuseppe Cacace/AFP

U.S. launches air strike against Taliban to defend Afghan forces

Mar 04, 2020 - 7:11 PM

US Forces-Afghanistan spokesman Sonny Leggett says the air strike took place against Taliban fighters who were 'actively attacking' an Afghan forces checkpoint in Helmand province

WHAT HAPPENS TO PEACE PROCESS? Members of the Taliban delegation gather ahead of the signing ceremony with the United States in the Qatari capital Doha, on February 29, 2020. File photo by Giuseppe Cacace/AFP

Trump, Taliban political chief speak as Afghan violence rises

Mar 04, 2020 - 9:19 AM

The insurgents are the first to give news of the highly unusual phone call, which they say lasted 35 minutes

MULLAH. Taliban co-founder and political leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar attends talks with Afghan political figures in Moscow on May 30, 2019. Photo by Nikolay Korzhov/AFP

Taliban attack Afghan army bases, throwing peace talks into doubt

Mar 03, 2020 - 8:22 PM

The halt to the limited truce, which began on February 22, ends what was a welcome reprieve for ordinary Afghans who have born the brunt of the deadly violence

PARTIAL TRUCE ENDS. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani gestures as he speaks during a gathering to assess the general security situation in the in Jalalabad Province, in Jalalabad on March 3, 2020. Photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Taliban end partial truce as Afghan violence resumes

Mar 02, 2020 - 10:22 PM

'As per the (US-Taliban) agreement, our mujahideen will not attack foreign forces but our operations will continue against the Kabul administration forces,' says Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid

AFTER DEAL. Afghan Taliban militants and villagers attend a gathering as they celebrate the peace deal and their victory in the Afghan conflict on US in Afghanistan, in Alingar district of Laghman Province on March 2, 2020. Photo by Noorullah Shirzada/AFP

Afghanistan's partial truce will continue, 'with goal' for full ceasefire

Mar 01, 2020 - 3:30 PM

Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani pushes back against a clause in the deal that calls for the Taliban to release up to 1,000 prisoners and for the Afghan government to release up to 5,000 prisoners

(FILES) In this file photo taken on August 27, 2017 US Marines and Afghan Commandos stand together as an Afghan Air Force helicopter flies past during a combat training exercise at Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. - The United States has secured a seven-day reduction in violence in talks to help seek a negotiated settlement in Afghanistan, Pentagon chief Mark Esper said February 13, 2020. The announcement came as NATO defence ministers met in Brussels and a day after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani reported "notable progress" in negotiations with the Islamist insurgents."The United States and the Taliban have negotiated a proposal for a seven-day reduction in violence," Esper told reporters, dubbing his meetings with NATO colleagues "productive." (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP)

Peace, but not at our cost: Afghan women fear Taliban return

Mar 01, 2020 - 2:26 PM

Women remain wary of the insurgents, desperate to see an end to the violence, but fearful of paying a heavy price

U.S., Taliban sign historic deal on Afghanistan's future

Feb 29, 2020 - 10:22 PM

American troops are set to pull out from Afghanistan in 14 months

WITHDRAWAL. US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar shake hands after signing a peace agreement during a ceremony in the Qatari capital Doha on February 29, 2020. Photo by Karim Jaafar/AFP

Trump says he would sign a peace deal with the Taliban

Feb 23, 2020 - 11:00 PM

A partial truce is in effect in Afghanistan and could ultimately lead to a withdrawal of US forces after more than 18 years

RETURN. US President Donald Trump walks on the South Lawn upon his return to the White House in Washington, DC, on February 16, 2020. (Photo by Olivier Douliery / AFP

Afghans mark start of week-long partial truce amid isolated attacks

Feb 22, 2020 - 4:09 PM

The partial truce is expected to set the conditions for Washington and the insurgents to sign a deal that could ultimately pull US troops out after more than 18 years

A general view of the capital city of Kabul is pictured on August 3, 2019, as new talks between the US and the Taliban go on. - Washington is hoping for a breakthrough as talks between the US and the Taliban resumed in Doha on Saturday in a bid to end 18 years of war in Afghanistan. (Photo by WAKIL KOHSAR / AFP)

U.S. prepares to sign withdrawal deal with Taliban on February 29

Feb 21, 2020 - 9:36 PM

Both US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the Taliban issue statements saying they have agreed to sign the accord on February 29 in Doha, following the one-week partial truce

US-TALIBAN TALKS. In this file photo taken on August 27, 2017 US Marines and Afghan Commandos stand together as an Afghan Air Force helicopter flies past during a combat training exercise at Shorab Military Camp in Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

U.S. announces partial Taliban truce, Trump says peace deal 'close'

Feb 14, 2020 - 8:28 AM

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani reports 'notable progress' in negotiations with the Islamist extremists

SOLDIERS. In this photo taken on June 6, 2019, US soldiers look out over hillsides during a visit of the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan General Scott Miller at the Afghan National Army (ANA) checkpoint in Nerkh district of Wardak province. Photo by Thomas Watkin/AFP

U.S.-Taliban breakthrough appears closer as Ghani reports progress

Feb 12, 2020 - 7:26 PM

Washington and the insurgents have been locked in grueling talks that have stretched over more than a year for an agreement that would see the US pull thousands of troops from Afghanistan

TALKS. Afghan's President Ashraf Ghani looks on during a bilateral meeting with US President Donald Trump at Bagram Air Field during a surprise Thanksgiving day visit, on November 28, 2019 in Afghanistan. File photo by Olivier Douliery/AFP

Surrendered Pakistani Taliban spokesman escapes custody – official

Feb 09, 2020 - 9:33 PM

The confirmation comes days after Ehsanullah Ehsan, the former spokesman for the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, released an audio message claiming he had escaped detention and was now in Turkey

Taliban: 'No ceasefire plans' in Afghanistan

Dec 30, 2019 - 8:33 PM

The statement from the insurgents comes as local and international forces brace for another bloody winter amid renewed US-Taliban talks

KABUL. A general view of the capital city of Kabul, Afghanistan is pictured on August 3, 2019. Photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP

Afghan war caused 100,000 civilian casualties in last decade – U.N.

Dec 26, 2019 - 10:54 PM

The announcement comes as the Taliban and US continue to hold talks aimed at drawing a close to America's longest war

9 Afghan forces killed in Taliban insider attack – official

Dec 14, 2019 - 6:46 PM

The Afghan Ministry of Defense says the national army troops 'were martyred by Taliban terrorists in Qarabagh district of Ghazni province'

U.S. resumes talks with Taliban in Doha – US source

Dec 07, 2019 - 5:37 PM

The source says the focus of discussion will be reduction of violence that leads to intra-Afghan negotiations and a ceasefire

Trump visits troops in Afghanistan, says Taliban talks back on

Nov 29, 2019 - 8:05 AM

On a brief visit to Bagram Airfield outside the capital of Kabul, the US president serves turkey dinner to soldiers, poses for photographs and delivers a speech after meeting Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

US President Donald Trump speaks to the troops during a surprise Thanksgiving day visit at Bagram Air Field, on November 28, 2019 in Afghanistan. Olivier Douliery / AFP

Taliban release 2 Western hostages in Afghanistan

Nov 19, 2019 - 11:19 PM

The Taliban's main spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, confirms that the transfer of the Taliban prisoners 'is complete, and they have arrived where they were supposed to come'

SWAP. This file handout photo taken on October 15, 2014, by the Afghan National Directorate of Security shows Taliban prisoner Anas Haqqani, a senior leader of the Haqqani network, in Kabul. AFP PHOTO/Afghan National Directorate of Security (NDS)

Afghanistan to release senior Taliban prisoners in apparent swap

Nov 12, 2019 - 6:59 PM

The 3 Taliban prisoners include Anas Haqqani, who was seized in 2014 and whose older brother is the deputy Taliban leader and head of the Haqqani network, a notorious Taliban affiliate

SWAP. In this file photo, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani speaks during a joint press conference at the Presidential Palace in Kabul on November 6, 2018. File photo by Wakil Kohsar/AFP