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On February 15, 2023, the Urdu-language website of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA, i.e., the Afghan Taliban) published a statement marking the 34th anniversary of the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan. After nearly a decade-long U.S.-backed jihad in Afghanistan, the Soviet forces had withdrawn from Afghanistan on February 15, 1989.
In its statement, the Islamic Emirate greeted Afghans on the anniversary of the withdrawal of the Soviet Union from Afghanistan "as a result of the long jihad."
Following is the statement, as translated from Urdu:
"34 years ago... On 15 February 1989, Afghans forced the Soviet forces to withdraw from Afghanistan and end their domination over Afghanistan after a long struggle.
"The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan congratulates the entire Afghan nation on this great day for defeating an overwhelming force and forcing it out of Afghanistan as a result of the long jihad and unforgettable sacrifices of the Afghans and remembers this day as a proud day in the history of Afghanistan.
"All this was made possible by the blessing of Allah's blessed religion, when the Afghans held fast to Allah's religion strongly. We pray to Allah Ta'ala to give us the ability to hold on to our religion even more.
"Afghanistan has always been an important country in the region and the unfortunate events in this country have had an unfortunate impact on the entire region. The invading Soviet forces entered Afghanistan on December 27, 1979... Due to this, in nine years, Afghans got martyrdoms, suffered irreparable losses in every sphere of life apart from unrest, poverty, and hunger, migration, and many other crises.
"But thanks to the sacrifices of the Afghans, this formidable force was defeated. The Afghan nation is not an aggressor, but it cannot also tolerate the aggression of others.
"After the Soviet invasion, the U.S.-led invasion and subsequently its defeat proved that Afghans are very sensitive to foreign aggression, and they consider the struggle against it as their religious duty. They do not compromise on their religious and national values and traditions and the independence and integrity of the country.
"The Afghan nation is not only victorious and successful on the battlefield but also sincere and committed in understanding and dialogue. So it is better that no force tries to exploit Afghans in future. If the world interacts with us in a constructive and positive manner, then we are also ready to engage in positive interactions keeping in mind our religious and national interests.
"Now that Afghanistan has a legitimate, single, and permanent government under the Islamic Emirate's leadership, this should be seen as an opportunity for a path of dialogue and basis for positive development.
"The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan
Source: Alemarahurdu.af (Afghanistan), February 15, 2023.