The Taliban and allies control about 10 percent of the population. However, another 20 percent is contested leaving the Afghan government with control of 70 percent of the population.
|The claim above is made by General John Nicholson, the commander of NATO's Resolute Support and US Forces in Afghanistan. Nicholson characterized the situation as a positive development since the Taliban are operating primarily in rural areas. At a press briefing Nicholson said to reporters:|
“We believe the Afghans control or heavily influence 68 to 70 percent of the population. We believe the enemy control or influence about 10 percent of the population. And then the balance, roughly a quarter, is in play, is contested. This is a positive in the sense of the majority of the population is under control of the government forces and this primarily the population centers, and so on, and the enemy is primarily in more rural areas that have less impact on the future of the country.”