Taliban Celebrate Last Americans Left Years Ago

The Taliban in Afghanistan have declared Wednesday a national holiday. It has been a year since the last American military personnel left the country.

An official ceremony was held at Bagram Air Force Base, on the outskirts of Kabul. Foreign media were not allowed to be present. The base was Afghanistan’s main United States air base for about twenty years. About 10,000 American soldiers were stationed there.

In a statement, the government said this day marks “freedom from the American occupation.” “Happy Independence Day,” a government spokesman tweeted on Wednesday. On Tuesday night, fireworks were set off in the capital Kabul and shotguns were fired into the air. Armed Taliban fighters gathered with flags near the former US embassy. “Death to America” was, among other things, shouted.

Just before midnight on August 31, 2021, a plane took off from Kabul airport with the last American troops on board. By then, Afghanistan had already been completely overrun by the Taliban.

The Taliban initially promised a less strict regime than in the 1990s, but now there is repression again. For example, the rights of women and girls have been severely curtailed.

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