With the Taliban having taken over Afghanistan, it appears to now be a celebratory time for the militants. Even as thousands make frantic efforts to leave and a feeling of fear and uncertainty pervades the country, militants have been photographed cheerfully taking a spin through an amusement park.
The incongruous video has now gone viral, with many opining that this was a "nightmarishly strange" turn of events. A clip shows the purported Taliban members riding bumpily along in toy cars, smacking into each other with grins on their faces. And while this feeling of exuberance may be something that most of us can relate to, the comments sections seem to be a tad terrified. "They take over a country and first thing they do is go to a theme park .. scary and creepy!" read one post.
Most recent visuals involving the Taliban being of a violent or aggressive nature. And so, as the situation took a seemingly psychotic turn, social media users have had some difficulty wrapping their heads around the 'fun' side of the Taliban. "This is the most bizarre thing I’ve ever seen and I cannot even explain why," summed up one eloquent Instagram user.
The posts were initially shared by Reuters journalist Hamid Shalizi, whose verified Twitter account appears to have since been deleted. Nonetheless, the clips have since been picked up by several others users, being widely shared on a multitude of social media platforms.
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While there were no major reports of abuses or fighting in Kabul, many residents have stayed home and remain fearful after the insurgents' takeover saw prisons emptied and armories looted. Older generations remember their ultraconservative Islamic views, which included stonings, amputations and public executions during their rule before the U.S-led invasion that followed the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.
More recently on Tuesday, the Taliban has declared an "amnesty" across Afghanistan and urged women to join its government, trying to calm nerves across a tense capital city that only the day before saw chaos at its airport as people tried to flee their rule.
(With inputs from agencies)