Anti-Taliban protests in the eastern city of Jalalabad over the removal of the Afghan flag have now spread elsewhere in Afghanistan.
Al Jazeera’s Rob McBride, reporting from Kabul, said there were reports of hundreds of protesters taking to the streets over the same issue in Khost province.
McBride said that “a fairly sizable part” of Jalalabad’s residents were resisting the replacement of Afghanistan’s national flag in the city by the Taliban banner.
“We have seen uploaded on social media, protests in the streets of hundreds if not thousands of people waving the national flag,” he said.
“We know that they have put the flag back up again in an important square in Jalalabad and that there have been clashes with the Taliban …”
Babrak Amirzada, a reporter for a local news agency, said he and a TV cameraman from another agency were beaten by the Taliban as they tried to cover the unrest, according to The Associated Press news agency.
Meanwhile, planes carrying hundreds of evacuees from Kabul have arrived in the United Kingdom and Germany as Western nations stepped up evacuation efforts and the Taliban promised women’s rights, media freedom and amnesty for government officials in Afghanistan.
In Kabul, the Taliban sought to strike a conciliatory tone at its first press conference since its lightning seizure of the Afghan capital, promising to respect the rights of women “within the framework of Islam” and expressing a desire for peaceful relations with other countries.