Amid chaos in Afghanistan, Taliban says: We're keeping our word on evacuations

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The Afghan Taliban are "keeping their word" by providing foreign powers with their full support in evacuating their nationals from Kabul airport, a Taliban official said on Thursday.

“We are facilitating safe-exit passage not just for foreigners but also to Afghans,” the official told Reuters.

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“We are preventing any form of violent, verbal clash at the airport among Afghans, foreigners and Taliban members.”

Flag-waving protesters took to the streets of more Afghan cities on Thursday as popular opposition to the Taliban takeover spread, and a witness said several people were killed when the militants fired on a crowd in Asadabad in the east.

“Our flag, our identity,” a crowd of men and women waving black, red and green national flags shouted in the capital Kabul, a video clip posted on social media showed, on the day Afghanistan celebrates independence from British control in 1919.

A witness reported gunshots fired near the rally, but they appeared to be armed Taliban shooting in the air.

One woman walked wearing an Afghan flag around her shoulders, and those marching chanted "God is greatest". At some protests elsewhere, media have reported people tearing down the white flag of the Taliban.

Some of the demonstrations are small, but combined with the ongoing scramble by thousands of people to get to Kabul airport and flee the country, they underline the challenge the Taliban face to govern the country.

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