12-member Taliban group surrenders in Nangarhar
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): A 12-member Taliban group has joined the government-initiated peace process in eastern Nangarhar province, the governor said on Tuesday.
Salim Khan Kunduzi told Pajhwok Afghan News on the sidelines of a gathering held in honour of the reconciling militants at the provincial Peace Committee’s office here that the group joined the reconciliation programme on Tuesday.
He said the group had been active committing anti-state activities on the Jalalabad-Torkham highway in Shinwari and Momand Dara districts.
Led by commander Mullah Rabbani, the group members themselves contacted the government and said they wanted to live in peace, Kunduzi said.
In a reference to Monday’s meeting of Afghanistan, China, Pakistan and United States officials in Islamabad, the Nangarhar governor invited armed groups, killing their Afghan brothers at the behest of others, to come and live in peace with their families in their own country.
The peace committee chief, Haji Malak Nazir, said the 12-member group had turned in their weapons which were delivered to the Disarmament of Illegal Armed Groups (DIAG) programme. He said the group surrendered as a result of efforts by intelligence officials.
“Recently many Taliban militants have contacted us and say they want to join the peace process. So very soon many insurgents will reconcile with the government,” the peace negotiator said.
The reconciling commander, Mullah Rabbani, confessed to their involvement in blowing up bridges, attacks and other subversive activities in Shinwari and other nearby districts.
But he said he hoped he would now live a peaceful life, a reason he cited behind their reconciliation
So far 810 militants have joined the peace process in Nangarhar, according to the peace committee.
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