The leader of the Afghan National Resistance Front, Ahmad Massoud, said on September 8 that resistance to the Taliban* would continue, although his units were forced to retreat into the mountains and abandon their armoured vehicles.
An article published by Svobodnaya Pressa said that Massoud also accused official Islamabad of supporting the Taliban*. According to Fox News, the defenders of Panjshir were attacked by 27 Pakistani helicopters, supported by numerous drones. However, the Pakistani authorities always try to act in concert with their strategic partner — China.
The Chinese authorities have taken on the wait-and-see attitude with regard to Afghanistan. First of all, the Taliban* has been strengthening cooperation with Islamic extremists, including those operating in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region of the People's Republic of China. Therefore, it appears doubtful that China would be willing to provide the Taliban* with such serious military support.
The author of the article assumes that the helicopters flew from Tajikistan and were piloted by Afghans who had fled there before. Moreover, the author continues, the helicopters targeted the Taliban* rather than the insurgents. This was indirectly confirmed by media outlets, such as Telegram channel of Sputnik Afghanistan news agency.
According to available data, dozens of aircraft and helicopters of the former Afghan government army are now deployed in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Uzbekistan, however, is unwilling to get involved in the conflict in Afghanistan, whereas Tajikistan, which has the Russian 210th division stationed in the country, has already started providing assistance to the National Resistance Front of Ahmad Shah Massoud Jr.
After all, Panjshir is populated by Tajiks and, according to the Herat Times newspaper, weapons and ammunition have been shipped to the province by air since late August.
For Russia, this could mean a serious complication in relations with the current authorities in Kabul. If it was Tajik helicopters that struck the Taliban, Moscow could not but know that. After all, the Tajik sky is protected by air defenses of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO). Russia may thus be involved into the intra-Afghan conflict, the article concludes.
*terrorist organization, banned in Russia