Taliban declares last 'spring offensive'

2014-05-08 11:56
(Photo: file, AFP)

(Photo: file, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Kabul - Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan announced the start of their annual "spring offensive" on Thursday, vowing a final summer of bloody attacks on foreign forces before the 13-year Nato combat mission ends.

The Islamist extremists said that the offensive, beginning on Monday, would cleanse "the filth of the infidels" from the country and warned that Afghan translators, government officials and politicians would also be targeted.

The "Khaibar" offensive, named after an ancient battle between Muslims and Jews, will coincide with a planned second round of elections next month to choose a successor to President Hamid Karzai, who has ruled since the fall of the Taliban in 2001.

The 51 000 US-led Nato troops still deployed in Afghanistan are set to withdraw by December, ending a long and costly battle to defeat the rebels, who launched a fierce insurgency after being ousted from power.

Embassies

A small number of US troops may stay on from next year on a training and counter-terrorism mission, but the Taliban warned that the insurgency would continue against even a few thousand US troops.

The Taliban "insists on the unconditional withdrawal of all invading forces... and sees the continuation of its armed Jihad (as) imperative to achieving these goals," said an English-language statement on the group's website.

It added that attacks during the coming "fighting season" would target US military bases, foreign embassies and vehicle convoys, as well as the Afghan government.

Afghanistan's fighting season traditionally begins in April or May as snow recedes from the mountains and the Taliban marks the occasion with an annual declaration to attack foreign forces and unseat the Kabul government.

The Taliban had vowed to disrupt the first-round of presidential elections on 5 April, but they failed to launch a major attack on the campaign or on polling day.

Candidates

Former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah and ex-World Bank economist Ashraf Ghani are due to compete in a run-off vote in June after neither won more than 50% in the first round.

A potentially violent second-round election could be avoided by a power-sharing deal between the two candidates, but both Abdullah and Ghani have so far dismissed the possibility.

The next president is likely to sign a long-delayed deal with Washington to allow between 5 000 and 10 000 US troops to remain in Afghanistan after December.

Read more on:    nato  |  afghanistan  |  taliban
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Africa
 

Hottie of the day: Charlotte

Meet our hottie of the day, Charlotte. She feels sexiest after a good workout at the gym!

 
 

Men24.com

This is why guys shouldn’t be in photos
BMW drift battle: M235i vs. speedway bike
Want to start talking dirty?
And this year's Miss Bumbum title goes to...

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

Good Morning, Mr Mandela by Zelda la Grange

Good Morning, Mr Mandela tells the extraordinary story of how a young woman had her life, beliefs, prejudices and everything she once believed in utterly transformed by the greatest man of her time. Now R221. Pre-order now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Enjoy the view because as from tomorrow you are going to need to come back down to earth and join the party. In the meantime use...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.