3 special forces commanders suspended
KABUL (Pajhwok): President Hamid Karzai has suspended the three special forces commanders responsible for Kabul’s security during presidential elections, a British newspaper reported on Thursday.
The government plans to try them in a court martial on charges of illegal detentions and desecrating a mosque. The men have also been accused of collaborating with US and British commandos to serve interests.
While overruling his cabinet’s aversion, the president removed the men from their positions in late April, the Guardian said, citing unnamed sources. All special operations raids by police commandos have been suspended.
“President Hamid Karzai, who has for years been an outspoken critic of both night raids and illegal detentions, personally ordered the investigation and trial, in the face of opposition from top ministers and security officials,” it added.
According to the report, one officer headed the 333 commando unit, a second led the crisis response unit and the third was director of operations for the special forces.
Expected to be presented in court later this month, the specific allegations against the trio include the illegal detention of a man named Abdullah during a night raid in Kapisa province and the use of dogs to search a mosque nine months ago.
A subsequent inquiry found that all operations were in accordance with Afghan law and the accusation they searched mosques with dogs was false. Investigators also found no record of Abdullah being detained in the Kapisa raid.
But the president, rejecting the findings, personally ordered the men’s trial. "I'm not satisfied, I want this to go to court," he was quoted as saying.
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