Baghlan rally demands end to war in Dand-i-Ghori
PUL-I-KHUMRI (Pajhwok): Hundreds of people on Monday rallied in northern Baghlan province, demanding an end to ongoing clashes between Afghan forces and militants in Dand-i-Ghori and Dand-i-Shahabuddin areas.
The clashes in Dand-i-Ghori area of Pul-i-Khumri, the provincial capital, have been ongoing for the past one month and the violence in Dand-i-Shahabuddin on the outskirts of the city began a week ago.
As the clashes continued, the insurgents destroyed three power pylons in Dand-i-Shahabuddin, cutting off power supply from Uzbekistan to Kabul. The power supply was restored last Saturday after hectic efforts spanning three weeks.
Around 800 residents of Zamankhil, Hussainkhil, Dand-i-Shahabuddin areas and Baghlan-i-Markazi district on Saturday rallied and said dozens of civilians had been killed and wounded during the clashes that forced hundreds of families into leaving their homes.
They said the war that destroyed mosques, houses and farmlands should be brought to an end as soon as possible.
Borjan, a resident of Wazghari village of Dand-i-Shahabuddin, said: “The ongoing conflict should be stopped at any cost.”
He held both Taliban and Afghan forces responsible for civilian casualties and attacking people’s homes. Borjan said the Afghan forces operation was not well organised and should be immediately stopped.
Ali Mohammad, a resident of Salangi village of Dand-I-Ghori area, said: “It has been third week we are displaced to Pul-i-Khumri and living with our relatives due to the clashes in our area.”
He said one of his sons, who had been keeping their house in their village, was injured during the clashes. “We want an end to the ongoing violence and the government should resolve the problem through peace talks with militants,” Mohammad said.
The rally coincided with a rocket fire blamed on militants hitting the deputy governor’s office in Pul-i-Khumri city, leaving one person dead and four others wounded.
According to the Ministry of Refugee and Repatriation, more than 350,000 families have been displaced due to insecurity in the province. The displaced families are said to be in desperate need of assistance.
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