KABUL, Afghanistan -- Ignoring appeals to stay out of the capital, Afghan opposition fighters rolled into Kabul on Tuesday after Taliban troops fled. Residents, freed of the Islamic militia's restrictions, celebrated by blaring music from radios and shaving their beards.
Heavily armed alliance troops roamed the city, hunting Taliban stragglers and their Arab allies from Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida movement. At least five Pakistanis and two Arabs were slain.
Clashes broke out near the airport near Kandahar, the Taliban movement's headquarters in the south, when 200 fighters mutinied, a Taliban official, Mullah Najibullah, said at the Pakistani border at Chaman. There were signs the Taliban were abandoning Kandahar and other urban centers in the south, possibly to wage a guerrilla war from the mountains.
The United Nations reported that alliance troops had executed 100 Taliban fighters hiding in a school in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif on Saturday, and there were ongoing reports of reprisals.
As the Taliban retreated from Kabul, they took eight foreign aid workers, including two Americans, accused of spreading Christianity in Muslim Afghanistan, witnesses told The Associated Press.
"I saw them with my own eyes. They put them in the truck and then left at midnight. They said they are going to Kandahar," said Ajmal Mir, a guard at the abandoned detention center in the heart of the city where the eight had been held.
The fall of Kabul set off alarms in key U.S. ally Pakistan, which strongly opposes a takeover by the opposition alliance in neighboring Afghanistan. Its foreign ministry Tuesday appealed to the United Nations to send peacekeepers to control the city until a broad-based government can be installed.
"It is our hope that calm prevails and bloodshed is avoided," Foreign Ministry spokesman Aziz Ahmed Khan said in Islamabad, adding that Pakistan hoped a multiethnic government would be formed with U.N. help.
President Bush had urged the opposition to stay out of the capital until a new, broad-based government could be formed to replace the Taliban.
Alliance officials said the unexpected Taliban evacuation made it necessary for them to enter the city to maintain public order.
The alliance's interior minister, Yunis Qanoni, said the main body of opposition forces would stay out of the city.
Mindful of international concern over a potential wave of revenge killings in the city, the alliance was rushing in 3,000 specially trained security troops to maintain order. Alliance Defense Minister Mohammad Fahim and Foreign Minister Abdullah entered the city around midday.
As the sun rose over the Hindu Kush mountains, Kabul residents shouted out congratulations, honked car horns and rang bells on their bicycles. Men shaved off beards -- mandated by the Taliban -- and the sounds of music returned after having been banned by the Islamic militia.
In Kandahar -- the birthplace of the Taliban movement and home to its supreme leader, Mullah Mohammad Omar -- a resident contacted by telephone said many Taliban appeared to have left the city, except for uniformed militia police. The resident spoke on condition of anonymity.
Sources contacted by telephone in Jalalabad said it appeared the Taliban were preparing to abandon that northeastern city too. The sources spoke on condition of anonymity.
Taliban guards Tuesday also abandoned the Torkham border station along the Pakistani frontier. A group of local Afghan elders was trying to sort out who would man the station, near the Pakistani city of Peshawar.
Pakistan has expressed fears that the opposition seizure of Kabul will spark bloodshed and revenge killings.
U.N. spokeswoman Stephanie Bunker said the opposition was carrying out "punitive action" in Mazar-e-Sharif, which it seized Friday. "We have also heard that fighting is continuing in and around the city," she told journalists in Islamabad.
In Kabul, bands of heavily armed northern alliance soldiers roamed the city in taxis, trucks and cars, seeking out Arabs, Pakistanis, Chechens and others who had come to Afghanistan to fight with the Taliban.
Five Pakistanis were killed in a shootout early Tuesday, witnesses said. Their bodies lay in a public park hours later. Alliance troops were setting up roadblocks on streets where Arabs and others associated with al-Qaida movement had been living.
The bodies of two dead Arabs lay on the street near a U.N. guest house. Close to the bodies were rocket launchers and a rifle.
On the Shomali Plain on the road to Kabul, a large crowd stood around three dead Taliban fighters.
Alliance soldiers stood guard outside the offices of some international aid organizations. Some, however, appeared to have been looted. "Some illegal people went through and took everything from the offices," said Ghulam Ali, an elderly resident.
The alliance's special security troops drove into the capital in cars festooned with pictures of their late commander Ahmed Shah Massood, who was killed in September in a suicide bombing.
Qanoni said there are no plans for the deposed president, Burhanuddin Rabbani, to return to Kabul immediately. Kabul's 1 million people are wary of the alliance because of the bloody infighting that marked the four years of rule by Rabbani and his coalition.
That turmoil paved the way for the southern-based Taliban to capture Kabul in 1996, a move that was hailed by many residents as a step toward stability. However, the Taliban's harsh enforcement of strict Islamic rules alienated many urban dwellers.
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