According to US officials, the Afghan Army had more than 300,000 service members, in addition to an Air Force and other US-supplied equipment, before it collapsed.
The Taliban’s* chief of staff, Qari Fasihuddin, stated on 15 September that the group is considering the creation of a regular armed forces in Afghanistan in the near future, TOLO news cites the official as saying.
Fasihuddin said that consultations on the matter are ongoing during a press conference in Kabul, according to the Afghan broadcaster.
Washington provided the Afghan security forces with $28 billion in weaponry between 2002 and 2017, with virtually all of this equipment now feared to have fallen into the Taliban’s hands. In July, US President Joe Biden claimed that hundreds of thousands of uniformed troops, nearly 300,000, were ready to defend Afghanistan. They, however, did not manage to stop the Taliban.
Last week, the Taliban announced that Panjshir, the last Afghan province not under the group’s control, had been taken over. The following day, the Taliban announced the composition of the new interim government of Afghanistan led by Mohammad Hasan Akhund, who has been on the UN sanctions list since 2001.
In early August, the Taliban stepped up their offensive against Afghan government forces and entered the capital, Kabul, on 15 August, completing the takeover of the country. The events prompted a mass evacuation of western citizens and Afghans who had aided or worked for foreign troops and organisations.
*The Taliban is a terrorist organisation banned in Russia and many other countries.