Taliban forces take city

This item appears on page 16 of the November 2015 issue.

Taliban forces began assaulting Kunduz, a city of 300,000 people in northern Afghanistan, on Sept. 28, taking control of large portions of the city on Sept. 29-30. During the fighting, at least 40 people were killed and more than 300 were injured, most of them civilians.

Taliban fighters attempted to take the Kunduz airport from NATO forces on Sept. 29 but were rebuffed by American air strikes. On Sept. 30, Taliban fighters took the Bala Hissar fortress, a strategic hilltop army position in Kunduz, from Afghani forces.

On Oct. 1, Afghani troops pushed the Taliban from the city’s center. On Oct. 3, a NATO air strike hit a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kunduz, killing at least 19 people. Afghan officials had called for the strike, alleging that Taliban forces were firing small arms from the hospital.

Kunduz is the largest city the Taliban has exerted any control over since the US-led invasion removed them from power in 2001. As of press time, control of Kunduz was still in contention.