Afghan Taliban claim credit for US withdrawal



Kandahar: The Taliban marked on Friday's 10th anniversary of the Afghan war by claiming to have forced the United States and NATO to withdraw from the country.

Operation Enduring Freedom, launched on October 7, 2001 after the Taliban refused to surrender Osama bin Laden, took just weeks to topple the Islamists.

But the militia later regrouped to wage an increasingly deadly insurgency.

"The US invader, who claim they are supporters of peace, proved in 10 years that they are the most merciless and cruel people," the militia said.

"The US deprived Afghans of their Islamic, independent laws in the last 10 years and also deprived people of security and stability. The Afghan nation showed readiness to struggle against the US invaders," it added.

"The mujahedeen gradually strengthened jihad operations and used different war tactics against the enemy, which resulted in a number of casualties that led the invader enemy to think about withdrawing from this country."

The United States and its NATO allies have said they will withdraw combat troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2014.

According to the independent icasualties.org website, at least 2,754 foreign troops have died in Afghanistan, 1,802 of them American.

PTI