Taliban Kills Afghan Soldiers Trying to Surrender

NEW YORK -
Taliban fighters parade their weapons in Marawara district, Afghanistan, on July 6, 2020. (The Washington Post/Lorenzo Tugnoli)

The Taliban killed 22 unarmed Afghan soldiers who were trying to surrender last month, in an attack captured on video, The Hill reported.

The 22 soldiers killed were members of an Afghan Special Forces Unit. The attack took place on June 16 in the town of Dawlat Abad in Faryab province, which is near the border with Turkmenistan.

Witnesses said the commandos had run out of ammunition and they surrendered to the Taliban forces after a protracted battle to keep control of the town.

In video, unarmed men are seen exiting a building, shouting “surrender, surrender!” Then, shots ring out and at least a dozen people are shot, with people screaming and praying in distress.

The Taliban denied the video, and claimed it was holding 24 Afghan soldiers prisoner, but the Red Cross confirmed 22 bodies were retrieved, and the Afghan Ministry of Defense said the Taliban killed the soldiers it defeated.

The battle comes as American and European forces are withdrawing their troops from troubled Afghanistan. President Joe Biden has announced all American troops will leave by August 31.

As of July 10, the Taliban controlled 212 districts in the country. The fragile Afghan government controlled 76 districts, and 119 are still contested.

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smarcus@hamodia.com