Taliban capture key Afghanistan-Iran border crossing
July 9, 2021 -
Taliban fighters seized a major border crossing with Iran as the Islamist
insurgents continued their rapid military advances and President
Joe Biden said the U.S. military mission will conclude on Aug 31
The Taliban have captured a major border crossing between Afghanistan and Iran, according to Afghan officials. The Islam Qala crossing is one of the biggest trade gateways into Iran, generating an estimated $20m monthly revenue for the government.
It was the third border crossing the insurgents have taken in the past week, after previously seizing crossings with Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The development came as President Joe Biden said the U.S. military mission in Afghanistan will conclude on Aug. 31.
The Taliban wins have caused some countries to close their consulates in the region, while Tajikistan has called up reservists to reinforce that country’s southern border with Afghanistan.
Since mid-April, when Biden announced the end to Afghanistan’s “forever war,” the Taliban have made strides throughout the country.
Their most significant gains have been in the north, a traditional stronghold of the U.S.-allied warlords who helped defeat the Taliban in 2001. In Badakhshan province, many districts fell without a fight. The consulates of Turkey and Russia have reportedly closed in Mazar-e-Sharif, the capital of northern Balkh province, and Afghanistan’s fourth-largest city.