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US drones violate Afghanistan's airspace: Taliban

File photo of an American MQ-9 Reaper drone

The Taliban government says unmanned aerial vehicles belonging to the United States have been spotted violating the airspace over two of Afghanistan's southern provinces.

Zabihullah Mujahid provided the information to Afghanistan's TOLOnews agency on Saturday, specifying the provinces in question as Kandahar and Nimroz.

"These aircraft undoubtedly belong to the US, flying and crossing from the airspace of some neighboring countries into Afghanistan," he said.

"Everyone should understand their responsibilities in this matter and stop the aggression," Mujahid added.

Kabul had repeatedly protested the matter, he said, adding that Washington had to take the issue seriously.

Mujahid also criticized some of the country's neighbors for allowing the US to use their airspace to fly the aircraft into Afghanistan's skies.

"Unfortunately, Afghanistan lacks air defense forces and radar, so any country that wishes can violate Afghanistan's airspace," the agency cited Sarwar Niazi, a military expert, as saying.

The United States invaded Afghanistan in 2001 under the banner of "war on terror."

The invasion that toppled the Taliban was followed by the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Afghan civilians and displacement of millions of others.

The Taliban stormed back to power in August 2021 after making sweeping advances across the country, which triggered a messy withdrawal by US-led foreign forces as well as rapid collapse of the country's security forces.

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