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Taliban seize Bagram military prison 25 km north of Kabul, free inmates

The Bagram Air Base, also known as Bagram Airfield, is now under the Taliban’s control. Afghan forces at what used to be the largest US military base in the country, surrendered to the Taliban, according to Bagram district chief Darwaish Raufi.

The Bagram Prison was controlled by the US forces who were stationed in Afghanistan. Following the decision to withdraw American troops from the country, control of the prison was passed on to the Afghan Armed Forces on July 1. Both Taliban and Islamic State group fighters were incarcerated in the prison.

In a nationwide offensive that has taken just over a week, the Taliban have defeated, co-opted or sent Afghan security forces fleeing from wide swaths of the country, even though they had some air support from the U.S. military.

On Sunday, they reached Kabul. Three Afghan officials told The Associated Press that the Taliban were in the districts of Kalakan, Qarabagh and Paghman in the capital and awaiting a “peaceful transfer” of the city after promising not to take it by force.

Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen told Qatar’s Al-Jazeera English satellite news channel that the insurgents were in the process of negotiating with the government.

But when pressed on what kind of agreement the Taliban wanted, Shaheen acknowledged that they were seeking an unconditional surrender by the central government.

Taliban negotiators headed to the presidential palace Sunday to discuss the transfer, said an Afghan official who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals. It remained unclear when that transfer would take place.