Helmand clashes result from ANA negligence: Rahimi
LASHKARGHAN (Pajhwok): The governor on Saturday blamed insecurity in southern Helmand province on negligence by Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers.
Mirza Khan Rahimi, while explaining his 100-day action plan in Lashkargah, the provincial capital, said clashes in central parts resulted from a weak will of the army. He has devised plans to resolve the insecurity problem.
Taliban militants have increased attacks on security posts in Babaji area of Lashkargah and nearby Nad Ali and Marja districts.
However, Rahimi said some plans were in place to change the ANA mode from defensive to offensive against Taliban militants.
He added security forces would launch operations under a specific plan and large security bases recently established in some parts would be handed over to national and local police personnel.
To a question from Pajhwok Afghan News reporter that how the conflict spread in the presence of a large number of forces, Rahimi said the ANA soldiers had committed negligence in duty in some areas. “But these problems would not recur in future and would be resolved soon.”
He said massive operations have been launched to improve security situation in central parts of the province. Most of the areas in Marja district have been cleared of militants during the operations, he added.
He said 35 schools had temporarily been closed due to recent clashes in the central areas, affecting a large number of students.
His 100-day action focuses on problems between tribes, strengthening civil society institutes, implementing projects and improving the security situation.
Rahimi was speaking to reporters a day after 65 ANA soldiers joined the Taliban along with their weapons in Sangin district of Helmand.
Local security officials have not yet commented on the issue. But Ministry of Defense spokesman Maj. Gen. Dawlat Waziri had said all the commanders of 215th Maiwand Military Corps and other leaders of the crops have been reshuffled.
He said the Chief of Army Staff recently visited Helmand province and assessed the situation.
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