Illegal groups in Badghis to be disarmed
HERAT CITY (PAN): Tens of illegal groups would be disarmed to improve the security situation and pave the way for development projects in northwestern Badghis province, an official promised on Thursday.
Two people were killed and as many wounded earlier in the week when supporters of two former jihadi commanders clashed in Jawand district, fuelling tension in the town.
Mirwais Mirzakwal, the governor's spokesman, told Pajhwok Afghan News local authorities had decided to disarm the 21 irresponsible groups operating across the province in three phases.
Each group has at least 15 gunmen, posing the second biggest challenge to security after the insurgents, according to Mirzakwal, who said the outfits would be asked to surrender their weapons.
If they refused to lay down their arms, the groups would be forcibly disarmed, the spokesman added, hoping residents would cooperate with the government in restoring peace.
Sufi Gul Ahmad, a tribal elder from Jawand, acknowledged Badghis was awash with unlicenced weapons. Former jihadi commanders, controlling parts of the province, should be disarmed, he demanded.
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