Inside Story

Can the Taliban in Afghanistan be defeated?

The armed group’s spring offensive is under way, and it is gaining ground.

Afghanistan’s government has lost control of nearly five percent of its territory to the Taliban since the beginning of the year and the armed group has continued to gain ground.

The Taliban has now captured Qala-e-Zal district, just outside the northern city of Kunduz, the second to fall since the launch of its annual spring offensive last week.

It controls small pockets in the east near Kabul and a large part of the south near Lashkar Gah.

It also has a foothold in the west near Herat. And a recent report found the Taliban now has control of 19 out of about 400 governing districts.

So what does the future hold for Afghanistan?

Presenter: Sami Zeidan


Hashmat Moslih – Al Jazeera political analyst on Afghanistan & Central Asia

Sediq Sediqi – Director of the Afghanistan Government Media and Information Center

Rodger Shanahan – Research fellow at the Lowy Institute