Advertisement

Pentagon: U.S. launched airstrikes on Taliban in support of Afghan forces

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said Thursday that the United States has launched airstrikes against the Taliban to support Afghan forces in the last several days. File Photo by M. Sadiq/EPA-EFE
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said Thursday that the United States has launched airstrikes against the Taliban to support Afghan forces "in the last several days." File Photo by M. Sadiq/EPA-EFE

July 22 (UPI) -- The United States has conducted airstrikes against the Taliban to support Afghan forces, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said Thursday.

During a press briefing, Kirby said that the United States has "acted through airstrikes to support the ANDSF" but did not provide further details aside from stating the strikes took place "in the last several days."

Advertisement

The announcement comes as the Taliban has claimed to have captured key locations in Afghanistan, including the strategic Chaman-Spin Boldak crossing on the border with Pakistan, while U.S. troops withdraw from the region.

The United States began its drawdown from Afghanistan in early May, with about 95% of troops withdrawn and a deadline of Aug. 31, prompting concern that the absence will provide the Taliban the opportunity to make territorial gains.

On Wednesday, Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the Taliban gained control of about half of Afghanistan's 420 districts but noted none of the nation's 34 provincial capitals have been seized.

"There clearly is a narrative out there that the Taliban are winning," he said. "In fact, they are propagating an inevitable victory on their behalf, they're dominating a lot of the airwaves."

Advertisement

Biden, in announcing the updated goal to complete the withdrawal next month, said he trusts "the capacity of the Afghan military" and does not believe a Taliban takeover is inevitable.

"It's up to the Afghans to make decisions about the future of their country," he said.

Latest Headlines