- Title: Profile of embattled Afghan President Ashraf Ghani as Taliban enter Kabul
- Date: 15th August 2021
- Summary: GHANI DELIVERING SPEECH BEHIND PODIUM (SOUNDBITE) (Pashto) AFGHAN PRESIDENT, ASHRAF GHANI; SAYING: "This year the armed Taliban said yes to the government's call for peace and announced a ceasefire during the Eid days. We hope that the ceasefire will continue, and we will witness no bloodshed anymore in the country." AFGHAN OFFICIALS CLAPPING/GHANI HUGGING AND SHAKING HANDS WITH OFFICIALS U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, on a surprise visit to Afghanistan, promised support for President Ashraf Ghani's bid to start peace talks with the Taliban and repeated the United States' commitment to take part. KABUL, AFGHANISTAN (FILE - JULY 9, 2018) (REUTERS) U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE MIKE POMPEO AND AFGHAN PRESIDENT ASHRAF GHANI WALKING IN FOR JOINT NEWS CONFERENCE REPORTER ASKING QUESTION OFFICIAL SEATED VARIOUS OF POMPEO AND GHANI AT NEWS CONFERENCE Ghani entered the 2019 presidential race after forging an alliance with a staunch critic to challenge his former governing partners at a time when the Taliban shut him out of talks to end more than 17 years of war. Talks between the United States and the Taliban on pulling out troops have also collapsed. KABUL, AFGHANISTAN (FILE - JANUARY 20, 2019) (REUTERS) AFGHAN PRESIDENT ASHRAF GHANI AND HIS VICE-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES TAKING SEATS TO REGISTER FOR PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION AT AFGHAN INDEPENDENT ELECTION COMMISSION GHANI AND HIS VICE-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES SEATED VARIOUS OF GHANI REGISTERING AS PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE GHANI SUPPORTERS WATCHING (SOUNDBITE) (Dari) AFGHAN PRESIDENT, ASHRAF GHANI, SAYING: "Peace offers for the first time come from my address. This team is committed to peace and we will bring peace to the country." GHANI'S WIFE AND VICE-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES APPLAUDING Ghani met German Chancellor Angela Merkel on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference. MUNICH, GERMANY (FILE - FEBRUARY 16, 2019) (REUTERS) AFGHAN PRESIDENT ASHRAF GHANI AND GERMAN CHANCELLOR ANGELA MERKEL SHAKING HANDS ON THE SIDELINES OF THE MUNICH SECURITY CONFERENCE GHANI AND MERKEL LEAVING THE ROOM
- Embargoed: 29th August 2021 13:16
- Keywords: Ashraf Ghani preliminary results presidential election slim majority
- Location: MAZAR-I-SHARIF, HERAT, KABUL, KUNDUZ, KHOJA GHAR, AFGHANISTAN / BRUSSELS, BELGIUM / LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM/ WASHINGTON D.C., U.S. / RAWALPINDI, ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN/ MUNICH, GERMANY / BISHKEK, KYRGYZSTAN
- City: MAZAR-I-SHARIF, HERAT, KABUL, KUNDUZ, KHOJA GHAR, AFGHANISTAN / BRUSSELS, BELGIUM / LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM/ WASHINGTON D.C., U.S. / RAWALPINDI, ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN/ MUNICH, GERMANY / BISHKEK, KYRGYZSTAN
- Country: Afghanistan
- Topics: Asia / Pacific
- Reuters ID: LVA00EEQF26H3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Embattled Afghan President Ashraf Ghani was holding talks with the U.S. peace envoy and top NATO officials, a palace official said on Sunday (August 15) after Taliban fighters entered Kabul.
The arrival of the Taliban in the Afghan capital capped a lightning advance by the Islamist militants who were ousted from Kabul 20 years ago by U.S.-led forces after the Sept 11 attacks on the United States. A Taliban spokesman said in a statement that the group was in talks with the government for a peaceful surrender of the capital.
The collapse of the Afghan government defence has stunned diplomats - just last week, a U.S. intelligence estimate said Kabul could hold out for at least three months.
Power would be handed over to a transitional administration, the government's acting interior minister, Abdul Sattar Mirzakawal, said in a tweet on the Tolo news channel. "There won't be an attack on the city, it is agreed that there will be a peaceful handover," he said without elaborating.
On Saturday (August 14) Ghani addressed the nation for the first time since the Taliban takeover gained momentum and said he was in talks with various parties.
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