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In Afghanistan, Taliban and civilians fraternize

From June 8th to June 18th 2018, in Afghanistan, the civil war between the Taliban and the government forces of the Islamic Republic was interrupted during a ceasefire. Andrew Quilty photographed this unprecedented event.

On the occasion of the feast of Eid, which celebrates the last days of Ramadan, an exceptional ceasefire was declared in Kabul between the Taliban and the Afghan security forces. Spread over about ten days, it is the first cease-fire at the national level that has been formed on the respective and official agreements of both opponents, since the intervention in 2001 of the United States and the international coalition.

Unique scenes of fraternization between Taliban, Afghan people and members of the security forces were observed in Kabul, while civilians celebrated the truce. Taliban and their supporters entered the city, leaving their weapons at the gates of the Afghan capital. They were greeted by a crowd cheering and greeting them, while other residents watched with suspicion. However, these peaceful demonstrations were obscured by two suicide bombings targeting the rallies, which were later claimed by the Islamic State terrorist organization. Michael Kugelman, a member of the Wilson Center, a Washington-based think tank, concludes that "while reconciliation still seems a distant prospect, it now seems a little more feasible".

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