Hours after the final foreign forces flew out of Afghanistan, Taliban leaders walked victorious through the airport, flanked by guards dressed in special forces combat kit inspecting destroyed US helicopters.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid led a group of officials onto the runway, his usual stoic expression replaced by broad grin.
The Afghan group said on Tuesday Afghanistan is now a “free and sovereign” nation as it hailed the exit of US troops, describing their departure as a “historic moment”.
The United States’ 20-year war in Afghanistan is over after the Pentagon announced the completion of its military mission to evacuate “American citizens and vulnerable Afghans”.
On Tuesday, all checkpoints, bar one, had been removed from the road leading to the airport. Ensuring the security of Kabul's Hamid Karzai International Airport is a key issue, and the Taliban have repeatedly said they would not accept any foreign military presence in Afghanistan.
Various US choppers were seen flying around in the capital city of Kabul and Kandahar province.
In a now viral clip, a helicopter can be seen flying across a residential area with an individual dangling below it. Allegations on social media suggest that the man had been killed by the Taliban before they tied him to a US military helicopter and went out to patrol Kandahar province.
In other videos, US military helicopter could be seen patrolling across the cities after US troops completely withdrew from the war-torn country after 20 years.
The US also left behind the C-RAM system -- counter rocket, artillery, and mortar -- that was used to protect the airport from rocket attacks.
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