New reports coming out of Afghanistan suggest that the Taliban, which demolished the Afghan government and took over mid August, are now carrying out "house-to-house executions" following the evacuation of U.S. troops. Audio recordings have also surfaced showing an Afghan man who worked with U.S. forces on the ground, speaking out on gunfire as he hid from the Taliban.
"I think there's a conflict between the Taliban, I have no idea where I'm located," a man said in the audio clip that was provided to Fox News. The audio clip was recorded on Monday, around the time the last plane evacuating Americans left Kabul airport. Gunshots are heard in the background.
"From everywhere I hear the sounds of shooting, gunfire. I have no idea how to leave," the man said. Moreover, a senior U.S. official told the network's investigative journalist Lara Logan that Taliban militants were carrying out "house-to-house executions in Kabul" following the departure of the Western forces from Afghanistan.
From senior US source: house-to-house executions in Kabul following US mil departure. There are no words for what this administration has done to all of us - Afghan and American. pic.twitter.com/KzbLALKxGy
— Lara Logan (@laralogan) August 30, 2021
Just hours following the final U.S. exit, the Taliban took to their official Twitter account to share, "The last American soldier left Kabul airport at 9pm Afghan time tonight and our country gained full independence. Thank God and blessings."
According to the New York Post, several reports of gunfire and fireworks surfaced after the U.S. troops concluded their withdrawal from Afghanistan. Taliban spokesman Bilal Karimi told Agence France-Presse after the group stormed the airport that "All the American troops have left Afghanistan, we are very happy - you can listen to the celebratory fire."
Last week, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet addressed the Human Rights Council to say that she received credible reports of "summary executions" of civilians in Afghanistan, as well as restrictions on women, Al Jazeera reported. She also urged the Geneva forum to establish a mechanism to closely monitor the Taliban's operations.
"There are grave fears for women, for journalists and for the new generation of civil society leaders who have emerged in the past years," Bachelet said during the forum's emergency session. "Afghanistan's diverse ethnic and religious minorities are also at risk of violence and repression, given previous patterns of serious violations under Taliban rule and reports of killings and targeted attacks in recent months."
Senior Afghan diplomat Nasir Ahmad Andisha campaigned for the Taliban's accountability in the country's "uncertain and dire" situation, while Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission chairperson Shaharzad Akbar took aim at the international community that is already "failing them."
According to Politico, President Joe Biden remained defiant of his decision to stand by the August 31 deadline of the U.S. exit. In Tuesday's address, he said, "There is no evacuation from the end of a war that you can run without the kinds of complexities, challenges, threats we faced."
The Democratic leader, who said that the Americans who still remain in Afghanistan today were given several warnings to leave the country as early as March and are dual citizens anyway, said, "I give you my word with all of my heart, I believe this is the right decision, the wise decision, and the best decision for America."
It's worth noting, however, that Biden promised to stay in Afghanistan until all Americans have been evacuated, but didn't. Marine Corps General Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr., U.S. Central Command commander, confirmed that people who should've been evacuated to safety were left in the country, which is now under Taliban rule.
"We did not get everybody out that we wanted to get out," McKenzie said.