‘Daesh, Taliban coordinate attacks in Sar-i-Pul’
MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): Northern Sar-i-Pul province has been under huge security threat, the governor said on Saturday, asking the central government for urgent assistance to deal with the threat posed by Taliban and other insurgent groups.
Speaking at a press conference in Mazar-i-Sharif, the capital of Balkh province, Sar-i-Pul governor Mohammad Zahir Wehdat said the rebels remained in control of Kohistanat district over the past 14 months.
Wehdat said Sar-i-Pul had been the scene of two major attacks since he took charge as the governor 13 months back.
He said a Taliban attack on the Sancharak district two months back had been repulsed and 15 days ago the Taliban coming from various provinces attacked Sar-i-Pul to capture it, but they did not succeed.
He said the attack involved militants not only from Sar-i-Pul but from nearby provinces and they attacked the province from five directions.
He said the latest attacks left 64 militants dead and 78 others wounded. The governor thanked President Ashraf Ghani and the Afghan National Army and the air force for extending overnight support to the people of the province.
However, the governor blamed what he called uncontrollable security situation of Sar-i-Pul on the central government.
“Despite our repeated requests over the past 13 months, no major operation against militants was carried out,” complained the governor. He said as a result of no action, the Taliban were able to turn the Kohistanat district into their centre of training and education.
He said foreign terrorists mentored students at the centre in Kohistanat where 60 suicide bombers had been prepared.
The governor said Islamic State or Daesh group had been present in the province over the past six months and coordinated attacks with the Taliban.
However, Daesh and Taliban militants had clashed many times in eastern Nangarhar and other provinces.
About the number of militants operating in Sar-i-Pul, the governor said they numbered between 3000 and 4000.
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