Afghanistan LIVE: Taliban 'massacre civilians' as revenge killings mount after withdrawal

Further violence is killing innocent civilians

Further violence is killing innocent civilians (Image: GETTY)

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Taliban is ‘more powerful than ever’ says commentator

The London Embassy and Washington Embassy said in tweets on Monday: “The Taliban massacred dozens of civilians in revenge killings. These murders could constitute war crimes.

“The Taliban’s leadership must be held responsible for the crimes of their fighters. If you cannot control your fighters now, you have no business in governance later.”

Afghanistan’s Independent Human Rights Commission has added that Taliban fighters carried out revenge killings in Spin Boldak too, which has further outraged US and UK relations.

Thousands of civilians have already had to flee from Lashkar Gah, Kandahar and Herat just before Taliban fighters attacked and continued a weekend of destruction on the three provincial capitals.

The Taliban said: “After taking over Spin Boldak district, the Taliban chased and identified past and present government officials and killed these people who had no combat role in the conflict.”

Sarah Leahy, the Medicine Sans Frontiers Helmand co-ordinator said: “There has been relentless gunfire, air strikes and mortars in densely populated areas. Houses are being bombed, and many people are suffering severe injuries.”

The US has offered to take in Afghan refugees who are fleeing the fighting.

The US State Department said on Monday: “In light of increased levels of Taliban violence, the US government is working to provide certain Afghans, including those who worked with the United States, the opportunity for refugee resettlement.”

Ashraf Ghani the President of Afgahanistan said: “The reason for our current situation is that the decision was taken abruptly.”

He also warned Washington their withdrawal would have “consequences”.

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08:35 Afghan President says hasty US withdrawal has triggered crisis

Ashraf Ghani, Afghanistan’s President, has blamed the rapidity of the US withdrawal from his country for the crisis currently engulfing it.

Speaking in the Afghan Parliament, Mr Ghani said an “imported, hasty” peace process “not only failed to bring peace but created doubt and ambiguity” among Afghans.

He warned: “The Taliban do not believe in lasting or just peace.”

Ashraf Ghani

Ashraf Ghani, Afghanistan’s President (Image: GETTY)

08:07 William Hague calls for us not to leave the Afghans

The former leader of the Conservative Party and Secretary of State for Foreign and Commenwealth affairs said: “We must not turn our backs on the Afghans.”

“The decision to withdraw was reckless but even now there are actions Britain and the West can take to lessen the damage.” in his column in The Times on Monday.

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