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    Attacks on security forces mounting: MoI

    KABUL (PAN): About 1,730 rebels and 635 policemen have been killed and 2,560 armed insurgents, including 20 suicide attackers, arrested across the country since March 21, a Ministry of Interior (MoI) official said on Saturday.

    MoI spokesman Ghulam Siddiq Siddiqui told a press conference in Kabul the casualties and arrests took place during 68 independent operations by Afghan forces and 646 joint raids.  

    Up to 330 militants were injured during the period, he said, adding that 470 national and 165 local police were killed and 1,246 others wounded during the first four months of the ongoing solar year.

    Most of the casualties resulted from roadside bombings, the spokesman explained, announcing the seizure of 1,951 landmines, 3,176 different kinds of weapons and 50 vehicles.

    Siddiqui acknowledged an uptick in attacks on security personnel. “We know the Taliban and their associates like Haqqani Network, Al Qaeda and regional intelligence networks have intensified activities, including plots.”

    He identified increasing rebel attacks, terrorising tribal elders, killing and beheading women and civilians in parks, poisoning students and cross-border incursions as plots aimed at undermining people’s optimism about their future.

    "Al Qaeda, Lashkar-i-Islam, Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, Lashkar-i-Taiba, Jesh-i-Mohammadi, the Tahir Youldash group and other terrorist networks have increased their activities in Pakistan’s tribal areas in coordination with regional intelligence networks. They are trying to execute their conspiracies in Afghanistan.''

    Siddiqui said 3,536 crimes, including robberies, injuries, abductions, cheating, bribery, moral corruption, traffic incidents, fraud and smuggling were registered in the country this year. Of the cases, 2,936 were detected by police, who detained 4,072 suspects and introduced them to judicial organs.

    Over the past four months, he said seven notorious drug traffickers and 505 suspects were detained. Eighty-two tonnes of drugs, 34 tonnes of chemical materials and 18,500 bottles of alcohol were seized and 22 drugs laboratories destroyed during the period.

    The MOI official cited the launch of the third phase of security transition, the creation of the joint 777th air-brigade, sending 400 police officers to Egypt for training, holding a national police conference and the graduation of a 7th bench of police officers from a professional training from the Kabul Police Academy as the government’s achievements over the past four months.