To commemorate a year since the Taliban marched into the capital following a remarkable string of war victories, fighters from the organization gathered in Kabul and waved the group's black and white flag.
As Afghanistan battles with increased poverty, drought, starvation, and waning hopes among women that they will play a significant part in the country's future, the Taliban celebrated their first year in power on Monday with modest festivities by the group's fighters.
To commemorate a year since the Taliban marched into the capital following a remarkable string of war victories, some people in Kabul fired celebratory bullets into the air, and Taliban fighters gathered, waving the group's black and white flag.
In a statement, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said, "This day is the day of the victory of truth over deception and the day of deliverance and independence of the Afghan nation."
Even though the organization a local affiliate of the Islamic State has carried out many attacks, the nation is safer now than it was when the hardline Islamist organization was engaged in combat with American-led foreign forces and their Afghan allies.
However, the level of difficulty the Taliban faces in putting Afghanistan on a course for economic growth and stability cannot be concealed by that relative security. The economy is under tremendous pressure, which is mostly due to the nation's isolation as a result of the foreign government's refusal to recognize its leaders.
As the international community insists that the Taliban respect Afghans' rights, particularly the rights of girls and women whose access to employment and education has been restricted, development funding that the nation had relied on so heavily has been reduced.
Talks with the US are hampered by the US demands that a Taliban leader subject to sanctions resign from his position as second in charge at the bank. The Taliban is demanding the return of $9 billion in central bank reserves stored abroad.
Asserting that they respect all Afghans' rights within the parameters of their interpretation of Islamic law, the Taliban refuses to give in to these demands.
There is also no fast solution to the refusesspiraling prices, mounting unemployment, and hunger that will only become worse as winter approaches until there is a significant change in either side's viewpoint.
Amena Arezo, a physician from the southeast province of Ghazni, declared, "We are all headed to darkness and tragedy." "People, especially women, have no future."
OVER HALF IN POVERTY
Over half of Afghans—roughly 25 million—now live in poverty, and the United Nations predicts that as the economy stalls, up to 900,000 jobs might be lost this year.
Fatima, a resident of the western province of Herat, claimed that while security had improved over the previous year, schools for females had closed and there were few prospects for women to find employment.
She requested that just her first name be used out of concern for retaliation like many Afghans do.
Jawed, a resident of southern Helmand province that had previously experienced intense warfare, claimed that security had much improved since the Taliban took back to power 20 years after being driven out by U.S.-backed forces. saw rogue inflation.
When the Taliban last controlled Afghanistan in the late 1990s, girls were forbidden from attending school, women were not allowed to work, and the strict Islamic law was brutally enforced, including through public executions.
Along with it, the country's civil society and independent media have dwindled as many of its members have left. In a recent review, the U.N. mission in Afghanistan said that the organization was stifling dissent by detaining journalists, activists, and protestors.
According to a Taliban spokesman, arbitrary arrests are not permitted and the Taliban has rejected the U.N. findings.
The administration of the nation is still seen as a de facto caretaker government with acting ministers, whose decisions can be overruled by the group's supreme spiritual leader, who is situated in the southern city of Kandahar.
According to some constitutional and legal experts, it is not always clear how the practical interpretation and application of the ethical and legal Islamic code of Sharia would take place.
The lack of uniformity in the law, according to Zalmai Nishat, an Afghan constitutional expert, and former government consultant, is "the most evident concern."
"The issue, which is the unpredictability, is that it is now at the whims of the (Taliban) leader in Kandahar and also at the whims of those who are leading on his behalf." organization