Afghans fear a return to brutal rule despite Taliban vows

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ISTANBUL (AP) — As the Taliban mass at the gates of Kabul, they are promising a new era of peace in Afghanistan. The militants have vowed amnesty for those they have been battling for two decades and a return to normal life. But Afghans who remember the Taliban’s brutal rule and those who have lived in areas under their control in recent years have watched with growing fear as the insurgents have overrun most of the country while international forces withdraw. Government offices, shops and schools are still shuttered in areas recently captured by the Taliban, with many residents either lying low or fleeing to the capital, Kabul.

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