US launches airstrikes to hit Taliban occupied equipment in Kandahar, says Pentagon

US launches airstrikes to hit Taliban occupied equipment in Kandahar, says Pentagon

US spokesperson John Kerby informed that the US has launched four airstrikes to target Taliban seized equipment in Kandahar.

The news of US airstrikes in Afghanistan came a day after America's most senior military officer admitted that the Taliban had gained "strategic momentum," with their forces now controlling about half of Afghanistan's more than 400 district centers.

The Pentagon, however, refrained from giving any specifics of its airstrikes in Afghanistan.

"Without speaking to specifics, I can say that in the last several days, we have acted through airstrikes to support the ANDSF (Afghan National Defense and Security Forces) but I won't get into tactical details of those strikes," Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby told reporters on Thursday at a news conference here.

"But we continue to be able to and we continue to, as the Secretary said yesterday, conduct airstrikes in support of the ANDSF," he said.

The commander of US forces in the region, Central Command's General Kenneth "Frank" McKenzie, would retain the authority to call for airstrikes in support of Afghan forces until the US withdrawal from Afghanistan was complete.

According to a defence official, the US military has carried out approximately six or seven strikes in the past 30 days, mostly using drones to launch the strikes, CNN reported.

A US defence official on Thursday said that the strikes targeted "captured military equipment that the Taliban [were] able to seize from the ANDSF," the Voice of America reported.

"There were enemy forces, enemy personnel targeted" alongside the captured equipment, the official added, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the information.

General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said on Wednesday that Taliban forces were putting pressure on 17 of Afghanistan's 34 provincial capitals.

"There's a possibility of a complete Taliban takeover or a possibility of any number of other scenarios, breakdown, warlordism, all other kinds of scenarios that are out there. We're monitoring very closely, I don't think the end game is yet written," he said


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