Having outlasted a superpower through two decades of war, the Taliban began seizing vast swathes of territory, before once again toppling a government in Kabul in the wake of a foreign power withdrawing. They swept across Afghanistan in just 10 days, taking their first provincial capital on 6 August . By 15 August 2022, they were at the gates of Kabul. Their lightning advance prompted tens of thousands of people to flee their homes, many arriving in the Afghan capital, others heading for neighbouring countries. The Taliban's return to rule brings an end to almost 20 years of a US-led coalition's presence in the country.