The Taliban announced the start of its “spring offensive” and named it after Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour, the previous emir who was killed by the US in a drone strike in Pakistan in May 2016.
Like previous spring offensives, the Taliban said that military operations would focus on foreign forces as well as Afghan security forces. Additionally, the Taliban said that it would focus on governance in “areas that have been cleansed from the enemy.”
The Taliban declared the ‘the Inauguration of the Spring Offensive ‘Operation Mansouri.’
The enemy will be targeted, harassed, killed or captured until they abandon their last posts.
The annual spring offensive normally marks the start of the “fighting season”, though this winter, the Taliban continued to battle government forces, most successfully in earlier attack on the military base outside the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif.
While the Taliban’s announcement of its spring offensive is often viewed as a propaganda exercise, Taliban military and political operations often closely adhere to the announced goals.