A view of the border fence outside the Kitton outpost on the border with Afghanistan in North Waziristan, Pakistan October 18, 2017. REUTERS/Caren Firouz - RC193CD09170

The Afghan Taliban captured the Ghagchi border crossing located in Kunar in Afghanistan that links the country to Bajaur in Pakistan. The crossing is one of the main hubs of trade and commerce for the landlocked country.

According to reports, the Afghan Taliban also captured Afghan defence forces who were allegedly trying to seek refuge in Pakistan.

The move comes as part of the Taliban strategy to gain control of the vital points that help the government in Kabul function. Last week, the Taliban captured Afghanistan’s main border crossing with Tajikistan, with security forces abandoning their posts and some fleeing across the frontier.

The seizure of Shir Khan Bandar, in the far north of Afghanistan, about 50 kilometres from Kunduz city, is the most significant gain for the Taliban since the US began the final stage of its troop withdrawal in May.

“Unfortunately this morning and after an hour of fighting the Taliban captured Shir Khan port and the town and all the border check posts with Tajikistan,” said Kunduz provincial council member Khaliddin Hakmi.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid confirmed the insurgents had seized the crossing, across the Pyanj River.

“Our Mujahideen are in full control of Shir Khan Bandar and all the border crossings with Tajikistan in Kunduz,” he told the media.


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