Anti-Daesh Qahar Selab Operation deemed a failure
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): Operation Qahar Selab was a failure because Daesh militants reoccupied areas from security forces in the Achin district of eastern Nangarhar province, said officials of the troubled town.
While residents say Daesh or the so-called Islamic State (IS) returned and reestablished their centres in the district’s key areas including Pikhi Khwar, Abdulkhel and Mamand Dara, forcing local residents into fleeing.
However, Afghan National Army (ANA) officials in the east say the operation has major achievements and resulted in heavy casualties to Daesh group.
The Achin district chief, Mualim Mashuq, who took office 10 days ago, on Monday visited security forces’ last checkpoint in Pandola.
This reporter accompanied the district chief during the visit to the police post. The post commander, Malang, whose morale was a bit weakened fearing IS snipers, pointed to areas where Daesh hideouts were located.
“That lower area is Pikhi Khwar and beyond that IS militants are stationed and target our soldiers using sniper rifles.”
Achin district police chief Lt. Ahmad Shah confirmed the ANP’s commander account and said security forces conducted a joint operation in the district but it failed to produce results instead increased problems for people.
He said Asadkhel, Mamand Tangi, Shadal Bazaar, Trilay and some other areas had been cleared of Daesh, but when security forces returned after concluding the Qahar Selab Operation, the areas again fell to Daesh.
“The operation crushed IS militants but no measures were taken to keep the captured areas and as a result, the operation was unsuccessful.”
Mualim Mashuq also criticized the operation and said the operation didn’t have any positive result.
Without providing further details because he was newly appointed to the post, the district chief said the operation was a failure because following the security forces return, Daesh group further strengthened.
“Daesh was frustrated well during the operation and they are currently number around 600, a decline relatively. Pakistanis, Uzbeks and Chechens are members of the group. After the operation, the government lost control of many areas and Daesh fighters have now reached Shadal Bazaar area.”
Residents of the area were also unhappy with the operation which was jointly conducted by security forces. The residents say the operation paved the way for more Daesh activeness.
A resident of Abdulkhel, Ashab Gul, 18, who joined ANA due to unemployment, visited the district centre for obtaining his identity card, said living in his village was impossible.
He criticized security forces for abandoning areas they captured from the Islamic State group.
Meanwhile, Ansarullah, 30, a resident of Pikhi Khwar area, who moved to Ghanikhel district due to IS presence, also called Qahar Selab Operation a failure.
Mualim Mashuq said unemployment and Daesh oppression forced many youth into joining the ANA. Dozens of youngsters visited the district centre to obtain ID cards on a daily basis.
However, officials of the 201st Selab Military Corps in the east denied the operation was a failure and said it was a wrong impression. They said the operation had been implemented properly.
The military corps spokesman, Maj. Shirin Aqa Faqir during an exclusive interview with Pajhwok said according to objectives of the operation, Daesh group suffered heavy casualties and many areas were recaptured from them, weakening the group.
“During the operation, Daesh group leader, some notorious commanders and many fighters were killed. The group’s complete elimination will take time.”
Nearly one month earlier, the Qahar Selab operation was conducted in Nangarhar’s Achin, Kot, Haska Mena and Nazian districts against Daesh in compliance with a presidential order.
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