London: The United Kingdom has warned all British nationals in Afghanistan to leave the country immediately because the “security situation continues to deteriorate” as the fighting intensifies.
The Office of Foreign Affairs, Commonwealth and Development updated its website on Friday and advised not to travel to Afghanistan.
“All British nationals in Afghanistan are advised to leave now by commercial means. If you are still in Afghanistan, you are advised to leave now by commercial means because of the worsening security situation,” it said.
The foreign office warned Britons not to rely on it for emergency evacuation, saying the assistance it could provide was “extremely limited”.
The warning was issued after the Taliban launched a major offensive to coincide with the withdrawal of US-led foreign troops after nearly two decades of conflict.
“Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Afghanistan. Specific methods of attack are evolving and increasing in sophistication,” the foreign office said.
The Taliban now control vast rural areas of Afghanistan and challenge government forces in several cities, including Herat, near the western border of Iran, and Lashkar Gah and Kandahar in the south.
On Friday, Islamic radicals occupied the first provincial capital since the offensive stepped up in May.
Zaranj, the capital of the southwest province of Nimroz, fell “without a fight”, deputy provincial governor Roh Gul Khairzad told AFP.