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‘Illegal armed groups aiding Taliban in north’

‘Illegal armed groups aiding Taliban in north’

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Mar 11, 2017 - 19:30

MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): Illegal armed groups have been assisting and supplying weapons to Talibaninfo-icon militants in northern Afghanistaninfo-icon, an official said on Saturday.

The Disbandment of Illegal Armed Groups (DIAG) program cheif in the north, Gen. Abdul Manan, told reporters here that their first survey showed 500 illegal armed groups were active in the northern zone.

Gen. Manan, who received 21 confiscated weapons from the police headquarters in Mazar-i-Sharif, the capital of Balkh province, said the number of illegal armed groups had increased five times.

He said members of uprising groups and Taliban militants who had joined the peace process but still toted guns were also among the illegal armed men.

Manan said the Afghan Local Police (ALP) also acted like illegal armed men instead of ensuring security.

Citing an example, he said once there were only 50 illegal armed men in Aqcha district of Jawzjan province, but now their strength had reached 2,000 in the name of uprising against the Taliban.

“We believe illegal armed gangs have been providing weapons to the insurgents,” he said.

He said there were no Daesh or Islamic State (IS) militants in the north but Taliban militants had replaced their white flags with black ones in the region.

However, officials in Jawzjan and Sar-I-Pul provinces said that Daesh fighters existed in some areas.

Manan warned of increased insecurity if the illegal armed groups were not controlled in the northern region.

With the change in government, some former jihadiinfo-icon figures equipped their supporters in the name of uprising.

mds/ma

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