‘Where did $2t vanish?’: Fawad Chaudhry lashes out at Afghan leadership as Taliban gain ground

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ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry on Wednesday lashed out at the Afghanistan military and civil leadership, wondering where all the aid money had “vanished” which was supposed to build the Afghan army all these years. 

The minister’s comments came in the wake of yet another offensive by the Taliban, as two more cities fell to the insurgents Tuesday. 

Flaying the “so-called” Afghanistan leadership, Chaudhry said people in both Afghanistan and the US must be wondering where the hefty $2 trillion, that was supposed to build the Afghanistan National Army, had gone. 

“How come all ministers and generals became billionaires but the people of Afghanistan are suffering due to poverty? Who is responsible for these sufferings?” he wondered. 

“Corruption of leadership drowns nations and Afghanistan is an example of that,” he concluded. 

Afghan govt possesses capability to defend itself: Pentagon

Expressing concern on the current situation in the war-torn country, Pentagon Spokespersom John Kirby had said Monday that the Afghan security forces have the resources required to fight the Afghan Taliban.

He had said that the Afghan security forces have the facilities that the Taliban lack, adding that the country’s security forces have to defend Afghanistan.

“The Afghan government possesses capability and capacity to defend itself,” he had said.

“I have the proof that they have a force of over 300,000 soldiers and police. They have a modern air force — an air force, by the way, which we continue to contribute to and to — and to improve. They have modern weaponry; they have — they have an organizational structure. They have a lot of advantages that the Taliban don’t have. Taliban doesn’t have an air force, the Taliban don’t own an airspace, they have a lot of advantages. Now, they have to use those advantages. They have to exert that leadership. And it’s got to come both from a political and from the military side,” Kirby had said.

Taliban take over two more cities in Afghanistan

The insurgents won control of Farah city, capital of the same-named province, and Pul-e-Khumri in Baghlan, within hours of each other, officials in both centres told AFP.

“The Taliban are now in the city,” Baghlan MP Mamoor Ahmadzai told AFP.

“They have raised their flag in the main square and on governor’s office building.”

The Taliban confirmed their seizure in separate tweets.

Six of the other provincial capitals to have fallen since Friday are in the country’s north, with the insurgents setting their sights on Mazar-i-Sharif, the region’s biggest city.

Its fall would signal the total collapse of government control in the traditionally anti-Taliban north.

Government forces are also battling the group in Kandahar and Helmand, the southern Pashto-speaking provinces from where the Taliban draw their strength.

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