Afghan forces and the Taliban were fighting fiercely Sunday in the centre of Kunduz, a major provincial capital, officials and residents said.
“Fierce street-to-street fighting is ongoing in different parts of the city. Some security forces have retreated towards the airport,” Amruddin Wali, a member of the Kunduz provincial council, told AFP.
The Taliban have taken two provincial capitals since Friday, but Kunduz — in the far north — would be the most significant to fall since the insurgents launched an offensive in May as foreign forces began the final stages of their withdrawal.
“The Taliban have reached the main square of the city. Aircraft are bombing them,” said Abdul Aziz, a resident reached by phone.
“There is total chaos.”
Afghan government forces have largely abandoned the countryside to the militants, but are now scrambling to defend a string of cities across the country.
On Friday the Taliban seized their first provincial capital, Zaranj in Nimroz, and followed it up a day later by taking Sheberghan in Jawzjan.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)