A photo of a TV anchor sitting in a studio in Afghanistan is going viral, not for the topic of discussion but for the gunmen standing behind the anchor holding sophisticated guns and keeping a hawk eye on the goings on. The Taliban took charge of Afghanistan on August 15 amid withdrawal of foreign troops.
"Afghanistan TV - surreal . This is what a political debate now looks like on Afghan TV, Taliban foot soldiers watching over the host. The presenter talks about the collapse of the Ghani govt and says the Islamic Emirate ... people should not to be afraid #Afghanistan," tweeted Yalda Hakim, host of BBC World News' Impact.
A video clip shared with the tweet shows the bespectacled presenter surrounded by seven gunmen while a man, probably the guest of the show, is sitting beside him.
Taliban took control of Afghanistan, starting their campaign on August 6 and completing it on August 15 with the takeover of Kabul. Chaotic scenes were reported from Kabul international airport with people storming the tarmac and clambering up to the planes in a desperate bid to leave the country.
Fearing a shackled existence, hordes of people have left the country since and are still being evacuated by the US and other countries. Many foreign news services have also pulled out their reporters.
Last week, a reporter of TOLOnews was allegedly thrashed by the Taliban. Many other reporters have also been beaten up by the terror fighters. This despite the Taliban assurance that media will be free and no one will be targeted.
A fortnight back, the Taliban terrorists killed a relative of a Deutsche Welle journalist while hunting for him. The incident highlighted the danger Taliban pose to media workers and their families in Afghanistan, Deutsche Welle director general Peter Limbourg said
"It is evident that the Taliban are already carrying out organised searches for journalists, both in Kabul and in the provinces. We are running out of time!" he was quoted as saying by AFP.