Taliban's security patrol during a second anniversary of taking over the government, in Kandahar, Afghanistan, 15 August 2023. EFE-EPA/STR

Taliban celebrate 2 years of triumph as Afghans mark black day

Kabul, Aug 15 (EFE).- The Taliban celebrated their second year in power in Afghanistan on Tuesday, accusing US soldiers of committing war crimes during two decades of American invasion.

An Afghan holds the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan'Äôs flag as the country marks the second anniversary of the Taliban taking over the Afghan government, in Kabul, Afghanistan, 15 August 2023. EFE-EPA/SAMIULLAH POPAL

While the Taliban boasted of bringing security and freedom under their Islamic system, Afghan men and women both in the country and around the world declared Aug. 21 as a “black day” for the people of Afghanistan.

Afghans hold Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan'Äôs flags as they mark the second anniversary of the Taliban taking over the Afghan government, in Kabul, Afghanistan, 15 August 2023. EFE-EPA/SAMIULLAH POPAL

Taliban members and their supporters took to the streets in Kabul and other major cities, carrying the white flag of the Islamists bearing the Shahada, which in Arabic reads: “There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is Allah’s messenger.”

The revelers celebrated the conquest of Kabul as the “Day of Victory” after two decades of war against the US-led international forces and the Western-backed Afghan government.

They marched through the big cities in American military vehicles that the US forces had handed over to the former Afghan army and police.

Deputy Prime Minister Abdul Salaam Hanafi blamed the US-led foreign forces for committing “various crimes in Afghanistan” during their 20-year stay in the country.

Addressing an event with top Taliban leaders in Kabul, Hanafi stated that foreign militaries had killed “thousands of Afghans and addicted five million to drugs.”

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid stated that they would not allow any foreign country to “threaten the independence and freedom of Afghanistan.”

However, Afghans took to social media to mourn the fall of Kabul to the Taliban, describing it as a black day that erased the progress achieved in the 20 years before the Islamists returned to power.

The Afghan Women’s Political Participation Network stated in a press release that Aug. 15 “is a dark day for the people of Afghanistan” when the global community surrendered the country to the Taliban.

UN rights chief Volker Türk urged the Taliban to “respect, uphold, and promote the rights of all people in Afghanistan without discrimination.”

In a statement, he mentioned that it was not “too late” for the Taliban government to change their human rights policies.

“We remain deeply troubled by the human rights situation, in particular the severe restrictions imposed on women and girls,” the statement said.

He denounced how the Taliban had eroded women’s rights to access education and work, their freedom of movement, and their participation in daily and public life through a series of discriminatory edicts issued since the takeover. EFE