US launches airstrikes against Taliban in Afghanistan

US launches airstrikes against Taliban in Afghanistan

The US military has announced that it has launched its first airstrike in Afghanistan since the end of a brief ceasefire that had been agreed upon last month due to a religious celebration between the insurgent group and the national forces.

These attacks occurred on Thursday night and Friday evening.

A United States Forces Afghanistan/Resolute Support (USFOR) spokesman Sonny Leggett tweeted that the first attack, which took place in the Kandahar province located in the south of the country, was meant to target an unknown number of Taliban soldiers. The second attack, which followed up a few hours later in the western province of Farah, was intended to attack a group of 25 Taliban fighters. Leggett stated that the airstrikes were launched to prevent planned attacks on two of the Afghan National Forces’ checkpoints.

The US has not yet publicly reported about the casualties of the explosions but an anonymous Afghan government official discretely said that the attack killed three senior commanders as well as at least 13 Taliban attackers in Farah.

Insight Analysis
Although fighting in the region has yet to deescalate, all parties have been actively trying to find political solutions to end the long reigning dispute. European diplomats have been involved in numerous attempts to find a peaceful resolution for both parties. Simultaneously, US president Donald Trump has announced his intention to withdraw all military personnel from the country sometime in the near future to decrease tension.

Despite this, violence continues to rise in the region as attacks between both sides persist. Afghan officials reported a Taliban led ambush on Friday in the midst of US airstrikes. A roadside bomb was used to kill ten police officers in Zabul, in the south of the country.

The Taliban has not yet to commented on the attack.

Sophie Velloso

Sophie Velloso is studying International Relations at Richmond the American International University in London. She is focusing her studies in the areas of transnational public affairs. She has an interest in geopolitics, international security, and sustainable development.