At least 17 killed in celebratory gunfire in Kabul: reports



At least 17 people were killed in celebratory gunfire in Kabul, news agencies said on Saturday, after Taliban sources said their fighters had seized control of Panjshir, the last province in Afghanistan holding out against the group.

Leaders of opposition to the Taliban have denied that the province has fallen.

The Shamshad news agency said “aerial shooting” in Kabul on Friday killed 17 people and wounded 41. Tolo news agency gave a similar toll.

At least 14 people were injured in celebratory firing in Nangarhar province east of the capital, said Gulzada Sangar, spokesman for an area hospital in the provincial capital of Jalalabad.

The gunfire drew a rebuke from the main Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid.

“Avoid shooting in the air and thank God instead,” Mujahid said in a message on Twitter. “The weapons and bullets given to you are public property. No one has the right to waste them. The bullets can also harm civilians, don't shoot in vain," he said.

In Panjshir, former vice president Amrullah Saleh, holed out alongside Ahmad Massoud — the son of legendary anti-Taliban commander Ahmad Shah Massoud — admitted the perilous position of the National Resistance Front (NRF).

“The situation is difficult, we have been under invasion,” Saleh said in a video message.

Usually known for his sharp Western suits, Saleh was filmed wearing a traditional shalwar kameez tunic and a flat woollen pakol cap favoured by Panjshiris.