Infighting between ex-jihadis shuts Kapisa schools
MAHMOOD RAQI (Pajhwok): Some schools have been closed due to infighting between former jihadi commanders in the Koh Band district of central Kapisa province, residents say.
The schools have been closed for two years due to clashes between rival groups -- a constant headache for civilians, who accuse the government of doing nothing to resolve long-running feuds between former jihadis.
One resident Mirza Mohammad told Pajhwok Afghan News the two commanders had hired illegal gunmen and had established bunkers and check-posts in the area.
But the government, despite having enough resources and forces, had been unable to disarm the commanders or reopen the schools, he regretted, saying they frequently stayed indoors due to clashes.
Another resident of the district, Habibullah, said dozens of people had died and been injured during clashes between the rivals. He said schools and health clinics had long been closed, but the government was yet to send security forces to the district to control the situation.
Yet another resident, Zarin, said Taliban militants also existed in the district, but the government had turned a blind eye to the situation. Many residents have migrated to other parts of the province due to clashes and insecurity.
Police spokesman Humayun Rashidi told Pajhwok Afghan News the two commanders, Gul Nazim and Sabit Wakil, had rivalry since the jihad era. The two had been commanders of the Hezb-i-Islami Afghanistan and the Jamiat-i-Islami groups in the past.
Rashidi confirmed schools had problems in the district, where children avoided going to school due to insecurity.
But the closure of schools in the district was denied Education Director Mohammad Nasim Safi, who admitted security problems in the town. He promised the problems would be resolved soon.
Some residents said the two commanders enjoyed the backing of high-ranking government officials and that was why no one could dare take action against them.
Deputy police chief Ibadullah Talwar confirmed the two commanders had created problems in the district. He said the matter had reached the Ministry of Interior, which had initiated measures to arrest the two commanders.
Situated in the northwestern part of Kapisa, Koh Band district borders central Panjsher and eastern Laghman provinces. Militants cross into Panjsher and Laghman through mountainous routes from this district.
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