‘Regional rivalries give birth to extremists in Afghanistan’
KABUL (Pajhwok): The acting defence minister on Tuesday said regional and local rivalries had led to the creation of extremist groups in Afghanistan, urging unity among the Afghans to deal with the complex situation.
Masoom Stanikzai, acting National Directorate of Security (NDS) chief Massoud Andrabi and Deputy Interior Minister Maj. Gen. Mohammad Ayub Salangi were summoned by the Meshrano Jirga or Senate to brief the upper house about the country’s security situation.
“The withdrawal of most of foreign troops from Afghanistan a year ago, the operation in North Waziristan, the infiltration of extremists into Afghanistan, their inroads into the north from two directions, the facilitated movement of rebels to the north are some of the reasons behind the increased influence of militants in the north,” Stanikzai told the lawmakers.
Extremist elements including Uzbek, Tajik, Chechen and Kazakh fighters had made the north insecure through Ghazni, Zabul, Badghis, Faryab and Chitral district of Pakistan, he said, adding that “there are some people who shifted the insurgents to the north in their vehicles.”
While pointing to Lapis Lazuli mines in Badakhshan, he said the enemies of Afghanistan wanted to disrupt security of areas where the income resources were located.
He said Afghan security forces could not resolve all problems alone because they fought a war involving all militant groups of the region.
“The problem will be solved with unity and support of politicians,” he said, insisting on people’s support with security forces.
About Pakistani army chief Gen. Raheel Sharif’s last visit to Kabul, the acting defence minister said the Afghan leaders in all meetings with Gen. Raheel had discussed three main issues including an end to the cross border shelling and making policies for peace talks.
He said the Afghan Taliban who were willing to shun violence should be given political space and those not taking the path of peace should be rendered unable to carry out disruptive activities.
“Until the government’s and people’s stance is not clear about peace and stability, until people don’t support their security forces and they don’t struggle for peace, peace would continue to elude Afghanistan,” he said.
Deputy Interior Minister Mohammad Ayub Salangi said they had designed operational plans against militants for winter and spring.
Regarding privileges for the police, he said salaries and allowances of police had been fixed on the basis of security situations in provinces.
The two security officials were able to convince lawmakers but the briefing by the NDS acting chief took place behind closed doors.
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