Taliban fighters entered the outskirts of Kabul on Sunday, with a spokesman for the terror organization saying they were expecting a “peaceful transfer” of Afghanistan’s capital city to their control.
Spokesman Suhail Shaheen made the remarks to the Al-Jazeera English news channel in Qatar, according to The Associated Press.
Meanwhile, the foreign ministry of neighboring Uzbekistan claimed Sunday that 84 Aghan government military personnel had crossed into that country, seeking assistance as the Taliban continues to make gains ahead of a scheduled final pullout of U.S.-NATO forces.
As the Taliban fighters neared Kabul, they pledged not to take the city “by force,” the AP reported.
TALIBAN EXECUTIONS, BEHEADINGS IN AFGHANISTAN STRIKE FEAR AMONG THOSE STUCK INSIDE COUNTRY
“No one’s life, property and dignity will be harmed and the lives of the citizens of Kabul will not be at risk,” a Taliban statement said.
U.S. House to be briefed
Photos from The Associated Press on Sunday showed U.S. military helicopters landing at the American Embassy in Kabul amid reports that diplomatic vehicles were also seen leaving the compound.
In Washington, members of the House were expected to meet at 9:45 a.m. for a virtual briefing on Afghanistan, led by Secret of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Fox News was told.
In just over a week’s time, Taliban fighters have taken over huge portions of the country, even though Afghan forces were receiving air support from the U.S. military.
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In Britain, media were reporting that the U.K. plans to airlift its Afghanistan ambassador out of the county by Monday evening amid fears that the Taliban could soon seize the airport.
Last week 600 British troops were being deployed to Kabul to help evacuate about 3,000 British nationals and 2,000 Afghans who worked with British troops, the AP reported.
Fox News’ Chad Pergram and The Associated Press contributed to this story.