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Afghans to Mark 40th Anniversary of Soviet Invasion

Afghans prepare to mark the 40th anniversary of Soviet invasion of their Afghanistan, which is on Friday, December 27.

Looking back at the war, a number of former mujahideen leaders said that the political differences between themselves prolonged the war in Afghanistan even though they forced Soviet troops to withdraw from the country.

This comes as new peace negotiations have begun with the aim of ending the war in Afghanistan so that four decades of misery—marked with the beginning of the Soviet invasion—can come to an end.
 

This comes as new peace negotiations have begun with the aim of ending the war in Afghanistan so that four decades of misery—marked with the beginning of the Soviet invasion—can come to an end.

“Our elders sat and made commitments, but they didn’t abide by them and the war started again,” said Mir Hakim, a resident in Kabul.

“After the victory of the mujahideen, unfortunately various countries started interfering here and this paved the way for our neighbors to impose war on us and they took the chance from us to establish an Islamic system for which we had fought,” said Mohammad Ismail Khan, a former mujahideen leader.

“The Afghan politicians committed brutal acts of repression on the Afghan nation,” said Abdul Basir Salangi, a former mujahideen commander.

“Unless the Afghans forge a consensus among themselves and resolve to solve the issues of the country, it will be difficult to resolve the situation in Afghanistan,” said Mohammad Sadiq, a member of the Afghan parliament.
 

“Unless the Afghans forge a consensus among themselves and resolve to solve the issues of the country, it will be difficult to resolve the situation in Afghanistan,” said Mohammad Sadiq, a member of the Afghan parliament.

In 1979 the Soviet Union entered then neighboring Afghanistan hoping to shore up their newly-established pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. Almost 100,000 Soviet Union soldiers rapidly took control of major cities and highways around the country, but war soon broke out with the rise of the mujahideen.

The war lasted nine years and an estimated one million civilians--including children--were killed, along with 90,000 mujahideen fighters, more than 20,000 Afghan troops and over 14,000 Soviet soldiers.
 

The war lasted nine years and an estimated one million civilians--including children--were killed, along with 90,000 mujahideen fighters, more than 20,000 Afghan troops and over 14,000 Soviet soldiers.

In 1979 Hafizullah Amin was the ruler of Afghanistan. The Soviets were told by their KGB spies that Amin's rule was a threat to the USSR-controlled part of Central Asia,  and that they suspected that he was not loyal to the Soviet Union.

The Soviets also suspected that Amin was behind the death of his predecessor, President Nur Muhammad Taraki.

In light of this the Soviets decided to remove him and on December 22, 1979, Soviet advisers to the army of Afghanistan took many steps. They stopped all telecommunication links in Kabul. No messages could come inside the city, or go outside the city. Soviet air force troops also reached Kabul.

Sensing danger, Amin sought refuge in the presidential palace, but on December 27 about 700 Soviet troops took over the  major government and military buildings in Kabul.
 

Sensing danger, Amin sought refuge in the presidential palace, but on December 27 about 700 Soviet troops took over the  major government and military buildings in Kabul.

On the same night, the Soviet troops reportedly destroyed Kabul's communication systems and minutes later stormed the presidential palace.

By morning, Amin and his two sons had been killed. Babrak Karmal was immediately appointed as head of the government and he ruled the country until he resigned in 1986.

Dr Najibullah Ahmadzai took over in 1987 and ruled until 1992.

Soviet soldiers remained in control of most major cities thereafter, while the mujahideen continued to fight them around the country.

Globally there was dissatisfaction about the Soviet’s occupancy and the then president of the United States, Jimmy Carter, said the Soviet action was "the most serious threat to the peace since the Second World War".
 

Globally there was dissatisfaction about the Soviet’s occupancy and the then president of the United States, Jimmy Carter, said the Soviet action was "the most serious threat to the peace since the Second World War".

By the mid-1980s, many mujahideen groups had organized themselves and were receiving help from a number of countries including the United States, United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan.

But after their withdrawal, peace in Afghanistan remained elusive as civil war broke out. This lasted for about 10 years and was then followed by the Taliban’s takeover – a regime that lasted just over five years.

Afghans to Mark 40th Anniversary of Soviet Invasion

Friday is the anniversary of President Amin’s death and the entry of Soviet soldiers.

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Afghans prepare to mark the 40th anniversary of Soviet invasion of their Afghanistan, which is on Friday, December 27.

Looking back at the war, a number of former mujahideen leaders said that the political differences between themselves prolonged the war in Afghanistan even though they forced Soviet troops to withdraw from the country.

This comes as new peace negotiations have begun with the aim of ending the war in Afghanistan so that four decades of misery—marked with the beginning of the Soviet invasion—can come to an end.
 

This comes as new peace negotiations have begun with the aim of ending the war in Afghanistan so that four decades of misery—marked with the beginning of the Soviet invasion—can come to an end.

“Our elders sat and made commitments, but they didn’t abide by them and the war started again,” said Mir Hakim, a resident in Kabul.

“After the victory of the mujahideen, unfortunately various countries started interfering here and this paved the way for our neighbors to impose war on us and they took the chance from us to establish an Islamic system for which we had fought,” said Mohammad Ismail Khan, a former mujahideen leader.

“The Afghan politicians committed brutal acts of repression on the Afghan nation,” said Abdul Basir Salangi, a former mujahideen commander.

“Unless the Afghans forge a consensus among themselves and resolve to solve the issues of the country, it will be difficult to resolve the situation in Afghanistan,” said Mohammad Sadiq, a member of the Afghan parliament.
 

“Unless the Afghans forge a consensus among themselves and resolve to solve the issues of the country, it will be difficult to resolve the situation in Afghanistan,” said Mohammad Sadiq, a member of the Afghan parliament.

In 1979 the Soviet Union entered then neighboring Afghanistan hoping to shore up their newly-established pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. Almost 100,000 Soviet Union soldiers rapidly took control of major cities and highways around the country, but war soon broke out with the rise of the mujahideen.

The war lasted nine years and an estimated one million civilians--including children--were killed, along with 90,000 mujahideen fighters, more than 20,000 Afghan troops and over 14,000 Soviet soldiers.
 

The war lasted nine years and an estimated one million civilians--including children--were killed, along with 90,000 mujahideen fighters, more than 20,000 Afghan troops and over 14,000 Soviet soldiers.

In 1979 Hafizullah Amin was the ruler of Afghanistan. The Soviets were told by their KGB spies that Amin's rule was a threat to the USSR-controlled part of Central Asia,  and that they suspected that he was not loyal to the Soviet Union.

The Soviets also suspected that Amin was behind the death of his predecessor, President Nur Muhammad Taraki.

In light of this the Soviets decided to remove him and on December 22, 1979, Soviet advisers to the army of Afghanistan took many steps. They stopped all telecommunication links in Kabul. No messages could come inside the city, or go outside the city. Soviet air force troops also reached Kabul.

Sensing danger, Amin sought refuge in the presidential palace, but on December 27 about 700 Soviet troops took over the  major government and military buildings in Kabul.
 

Sensing danger, Amin sought refuge in the presidential palace, but on December 27 about 700 Soviet troops took over the  major government and military buildings in Kabul.

On the same night, the Soviet troops reportedly destroyed Kabul's communication systems and minutes later stormed the presidential palace.

By morning, Amin and his two sons had been killed. Babrak Karmal was immediately appointed as head of the government and he ruled the country until he resigned in 1986.

Dr Najibullah Ahmadzai took over in 1987 and ruled until 1992.

Soviet soldiers remained in control of most major cities thereafter, while the mujahideen continued to fight them around the country.

Globally there was dissatisfaction about the Soviet’s occupancy and the then president of the United States, Jimmy Carter, said the Soviet action was "the most serious threat to the peace since the Second World War".
 

Globally there was dissatisfaction about the Soviet’s occupancy and the then president of the United States, Jimmy Carter, said the Soviet action was "the most serious threat to the peace since the Second World War".

By the mid-1980s, many mujahideen groups had organized themselves and were receiving help from a number of countries including the United States, United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan.

But after their withdrawal, peace in Afghanistan remained elusive as civil war broke out. This lasted for about 10 years and was then followed by the Taliban’s takeover – a regime that lasted just over five years.

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