New Taliban group emerges in Faryab
MAIMANA (Pajhwok): A splinter Taliban group has recently emerged in the Qaisar district of northern Faryab province, waging an armed struggle against the fighters loyal to Mullah Mohammad Omar, officials said on Monday.
The 20-member group holds sway in Raza Khan, Chichakto and Khwaja Aspahlan areas of Qaisar near the border with Turkmenistan, the town’s administrative head, Abdul Jamil Siddiqui, told Pajhwok Afghan News. So far 10 people have been killed in clashes between the rival group.
Reports say the group is linked to Mansoor Dadullah, a Taliban leader killed in 2007, and the Waziristan-based Haqqani network, with objectives to target those involved in killing innocent people.
The group is said to be opposed to foreign troops, but in favour of development projects. It has declared war on those destroying bridges and has allowed NGOs and government employees to continue their activities.
It recently executed a Taliban man in Qaisar. Faryab council secretary Syed Abdul Baqi Hashimi said the new rebel group, operating in six border districts, has many fighters.
It is led by Abdul Khaliq aka “Zalim Kush”, who has links with Mullah Agha Jan Mutasim, a moderate Taliban leader and peace negotiator, Dadullah and the Haqqanis.
“The group says they don’t collect Ushr and Zakat from locals and is not opposed to development activities. It fights for the sake of Allah,” Hashimi said.
Wishing not to be named, an influential figure from the area said the group had kidnapped three employees of a private company in Ghorak area three days back.
But the Qaisar district chief said the new group had not been active in the area
A Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, rejected the existence of such a group, saying it was propaganda aimed at creating differences among militants.
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