US defence secretary praises troops – two days after the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, ending America’s longest war

The militant group now in charge in Afghanistan holds a parade of captured military kit in the second biggest city, Kandahar

A Taliban spokesman says a new Afghan government could be announced in the next two days

He told the BBC that women may have some role in the new government but are unlikely to be ministers

UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has faced tough questions from MPs about the UK’s withdrawal from Afghanistan

Raab said intelligence suggested Kabul “would not fall this year”

The UK is in talks with the Taliban to secure safe passage for a number of British nationals and Afghans who remain there

Fallen US troops ‘gave their tomorrows’

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley says that overall, 778 sorties were flown to evacuate 124,334 people.

Almost 6,000 Americans were flown out, he says.

“We will continue to evacuate American civilians under the leadership of the Department of State as this mission has now transferred from a military mission to diplomatic mission.”

He goes on to praise the 13 US troops that were killed at the airport in the final days of the evacuation.

“They literally gave their tomorrows for the tomorrows of people they never knew,” he says.

He adds that “feelings of pain and sadness” will always accompany the “pride” that US soldiers who served in Afghanistan will feel for the rest of their lives

“Your service mattered. it was not in vain,” Gen Milley concludes.

The war has ended but our gratitude never will’

Secretary Austin adds that he plans to visit the Gulf next week “to thank our partners there who have done so much to help save and shelter Afghan civilians”.

He goes on to praise everyone who fought in the war over 20 years, saying: “The war has ended but our gratitude never will.”

Gen Mark Milley, the top officer in the US military, is now speaking.

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