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Afghanistan, Tangay locked up in Taliban country
2019

After conflicts between Talibans and Afghan government, the city of Kajaki is in the hands of Taliban, except a tiny 500m enclave of dilapidated and abandoned shop. That is everything left of governmental under-controlled Kajaki. This governmental area, Tangay Bazaar, looks like a ghost city. 300 people live in this small besieged oasis where they have been sequestered since 2016. The zone is a ruin, the few people living there are piled up in “apartment shop” where they try to provide for themselves in unsanitary conditions. Medical care is minimal, a nurse is the most qualified person outside the medical team at the Afghan army centre, but civilians unfortunately do not have access to it.

The only way to get out of this small enclave stuck at the heart of Taliban territory is helicopter. The population is depending of this latter to pick up supplies and food. Unfortunately, access to food is still complicated and a lot of people suffer from malnutrition. Children do not hesitate to pick up leftover food from governmental authorities or to venture to Taliban territory to bring food to feed their family.

U.S army having withdrawn from Kajaki, only Afghan governmental forces are presents. At the outpost soldiers are exposed to gusts of bullets from Taliban snipers who keep their positions at 300m from them. Shot recurrence damage a lot their barricade composed by ballistic glasses which are covered by shot impact and threaten to break.

After 18 years of conflict, trillions of dollars and tens of thousands of life lost, Afghan people do not expect anything from anyone. Beside, President Trump’s impatience to get out of Afghanistan, the Taliban’s best leverage against American negotiators—built up over the years since their ouster—comes from its ability to capture and hold vast amounts of the country and tie up government resources in places like Kajaki.

Inside Kajaki there are more immediate problems than the lofty goals of peace. “The main issue isn’t the fighting,” says Governor Muslimyar; “it’s trying to feed the people.”

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