Helmand police reject rumours of Marja’s fall to Taliban
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): The provincial police chief on Sunday rejected rumours that the Marja district of southern Helmand province had fallen to the Taliban, saying there had been some problems now addressed.
Brig. Gen. Abdul Rahman Sarjang told Pajhwok Afghan News the Taliban had not captured Marja district and there had been some threats that were overcome a day earlier.
He said reinforcements had reached the town and new security posts had been established there to strengthen security. “Police have a presence at the district centre and the police compound and the Afghan army is also stationed there,” he said, adding that the people of Marja currently traveled to the town through Nawa district and operations had been launched to clear the main road.
Sarjang said besides police 500 Afghan National Army troops were available in the Marja district for security. “The Taliban recently received a lot of money, weapons and logistics from Pakistan and the Taliban are trying to show Pakistan that they can capture areas.”
The police chief claimed a number of drug traders were involved in fueling insecurity to pave the ground for their business. Sarjang said security forces outnumbered insurgent in Helmand and areas lost to the rebels would be soon retaken.
He said security organs were coordinating well with each and they worked jointly to resolve problems, rejecting claims of some provincial council members that there was no coordination among security forces in the province.
Sarjang said the Khanshin district had not entirely fallen to the Taliban. “The Taliban have captured a former district headquarters building in Khanshin. The building looked like a security post.”
But another security official told Pajhwok Afghan News the Taliban had torched the district administration and police buildings in Khanshin.
Three days ago, the provincial council chief, Karim Khan Atal, told Pajhwok Afghan News that the Taliban have captured the Khanshin district centre.
Clashes between insurgents and security forces have been ongoing over the past five months in various parts of Helmand, a major centre of opium cultivation. The Taliban have captured Musa Qala, Nawzad and Sangin districts.
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