Foes languishing together in Ghazni jail
GHAZNI CITY (PAN): Police officials, serving jail sentences for different crimes, are being held together with militants in the central jail in southern Ghazni province.
The convicted police officials said they have either arrested or fought against the jailed insurgents on the battlefield. But now they are living together under the same roof.
They claimed having been engaged in physical clashes with the fighters inside cells. A Deh Yak district resident, Hamidullah, who served the police force for four years, said he lived with the guerrillas he had fought against in the past.
“They know me and I know them. We have many times engaged in gun-battles. The government should pay attention to this problem,” he demanded.
He said jail officials were aware of verbal and physical clashes taking place between former policemen and Taliban inmates, but they had no concern.
Residents of other provinces have also been held at the same facility. A Laghman resident, Noorul Haq, a public order policeman, who had been imprisoned for a traffic accident, said most of his fellow inmates were Taliban insurgents.
He said he lived in a constant fear that anytime he could be attacked and killed by the insurgents who often possessed knives.
“They can do anything they want to do. They can kill us with knives. They call us salves of infidels and curse us daily,” he said.
On the other hand, Taliban inmates also expressed their fear about the presence of police and militiamen in the same jail.
A Taliban inmate, Qari Ahmadullah, said some local policemen were shifted to the jail a few days ago and there was a big chaos when they faced Taliban inmates who had intimidated them in the past.
He also said there were policemen with whom they had fought and now lived under the same roof. He also called on the government to find a solution to the problem.
Jail officials also confirmed the problem which they said had led to quarrels. They complained about space shortage in the jail in the face of overcrowding.
Syed Sarwar, the jail’s deputy commander, complained the aging building had not enough cells. He said the problem of keeping foes under the same roof would continue as long as a new building was not constructed.
Provincial attorney Abdul Rashid Abid agreed it was wrong holding together the individuals baying for each other’s blood. However, he said the issue stemmed from a space shortage.
Nearly 400 inmates, including nine women, are being held at the prison. There was a clash between inmates last year and a result 15 people were killed and wounded.
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