Leaked Loya Jirga security plan termed as fake
KABUL (PAN): The Ministry of Interior (MoI), the National Directorate of Security (NDS) and the NATO-led ISAF on Monday called the Loya Jirga security plan released by the Taliban as false. The Taliban claimed on Sunday they had received a security plan for the upcoming traditional Loya Jirga and posted it on their website.
In a statement sent to Pajhwok Afghan News on Monday, the Taliban said the leakage includes a complete security plan, maps, duty stations of security forces and officials, their names and contact information as well as other important classified documents. A copy of the security plan is also attached to the statement.
However, Ghulam Seddiq Seddiqi, a spokesman for the ministry, told Pajhwok Afghan News the leaked information was not real. It was only the Taliban’s propaganda to undermine the security apparatus, he added.
"The security plan for the grand assembly was classified and so advanced that even high-ranking officials cannot access it. There is no possibility of any leakage to the Taliban," Seddiqi claimed.
Deputy Interior Minister Lt. Gen. Abdul Rahman Rahman also refused that the plan was leaked. It was a classic and old plan and might have been provided with cooperation from the regional intelligence agencies.
Bill Truelove, an ISAF media representative, Dominic Medley, a spokesperson for the NATO Senior Civilian Representative, also branded the plan as Taliban propaganda.
Addressing a press conference in capital Kabul, Lutfullah Mashal, an NDS spokesperson, said the plan released by the Taliban was not a security plan for the Loya Jirga since it was classified and no one could get it.
“If it was the real security plan of the Jirga, the Taliban would not disclose it. Instead, they would try to disrupt it,” Mashal said, adding several security plans had been prepared in the past for other events organised at the Polytechnic tent and it might have been one of them.
Calling text threats to senators not to attend the gathering as militant schemes, he said: “Security forces have taken stringent security measures and we hope the gathering would wrap up uneventfully.”
Some parliamentarians said they had received threats through text messages, saying: “Warning of the Islamic Emirates of Afghanistan: Participation at the American Loya Jirga is equal to death!”
The participants of the traditional Loya Jirga scheduled to be convened on Wednesday will discuss the pros and cons of a proposed strategic partnership agreement between Afghanistan and the US and peace mechanism.
Some former and all sitting members of Parliament, 30 percent members of provincial councils, representatives from civil society organisations, private sector, special people, religious scholars and other renowned figures would participate in the gathering to float their suggestions for the strategic relations with the US and setting up a mechanism for peace talks with the rebels.
Afghan influential figures from across the country, Canada, Norway and Quetta City of Pakistan have reached Kabul to attend the four-day grand assembly at the tent of Loya Jirga in Polytechnic area of capital Kabul, spokeswoman for the preparatory commission of the Jirga, Safia Siddiqui, told Pajhwok Afghan News.
Up to 120 Afghan refugees in Pakistan, 80 in Iran and 30 others in US, Canada and some European countries would also be in attendance. The jirga, to be also attended by Cabinet ministers and foreign dignitaries as guests, will involve 2030 people -- 18 percent of them women.