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The Taliban’s reconquest of Afghanistan has accelerated over the past several days as the insurgent group overtook the national capital of Kabul. Following the immediate collapse of the government—and as the U.S. continued toward the end of its nearly 20-year war—the future of the country is even more uncertain.
The end of the war has sparked a humanitarian crisis, as Afghans fearful of the future and potential retribution from the Taliban desperately try to flee via the city’s airport and through neighboring countries. U.S. President Joe Biden said Saturday that he would re-deploy thousands of U.S. troops in order to ensure an “orderly and safe” drawdown of U.S. personnel and evacuation of Afghan allies.
On Sunday, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the presidential palace, and Taliban officials entered it just a few hours later.
“The Taliban have won with the judgment of their swords and guns, and are now responsible for the honor, property, and self-preservation of their countrymen,” Ghani said in a statement posted to Facebook.
Photographs captured harrowing moments of the precarious situation in Afghanistan.