Women, children beaten and whipped as they try to reach Kabul airport

Kabul, Aug 18 (IANS) The Taliban’s promises of “safe passage” to the Kabul airport for Afghans trying to flee the country have been undermined by reports of women and children being beaten and whipped as they try to pass through checkpoints set up by the militants, The Guardian reported.
The US says the Taliban has committed to “safe passage” for people who want to reach the airport. But reports from the Afghan capital say that there have been incidents of violence at the checkpoints on Airport Road, including photographs of a woman and a child with head injuries after reportedly being beaten and whipped for trying to cross a checkpoint.
Sources in Kabul told The Guardian that the Taliban are checking the documents and forcibly turning some people around at the checkpoints, refusing to let them reach the airport.
The US National Security Advisor, Jake Sullivan, said that while significant numbers of people have been able to reach the airfield, now under the US military control, “there have been instances where we have received reports of people beng turned away or pushed back or even beaten… We are taking that up in a channel with the Taliban to try to resolve the issues. And we are concerned about whether that will continue to unfold in the coming days.”
Sullivan said that keeping open routes to the airport is an “hour-by-hour issue… It’s something we are clear-eyed about and very focused on holding the Taliban accountable to follow through on its commitment”.
White House press secretary, Jen Psaki, said that if the Taliban fail to provide safe passage to the airport for civilians, “the consequences are the full weight and force of the United States military. We’ve made that clear. But right now… We’re not trusting, we’re not taking their word for it”.
Also, Several people have been shot dead in Nangarhar province of Afghanistan by the Taliban during rallies supporting the Afghan national flag, as per reports.
Members of the Taliban opened fire on people rallying in support of the Afghan national flag in the eastern Nangarhar province, Sputnik reported. At least two people were killed and 12 others were injured after the Taliban opened fire on the protesters.

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