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Ahead of polls, trouble brewing in Balkh districts

Ahead of polls, trouble brewing in Balkh districts

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Apr 17, 2018 - 10:57

MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): Residents of Chamtal and Chahar Bulak districts of northern Balkh province claim some areas are deliberately being destabilised ahead of parliamentary elections.

Tajuddin, an inhabitant of Chamtal, told Pajhwok Afghan News the district always became unstable in the build-up to polls. Trouble is fomented to keep people from participation in the election process.

As the voter registration process got under way in Mazar-i-Sharif, he alleged, the Talibaninfo-icon suddenly surfaced in several villages and the Afghan Local Police (ALP) abandoned their check-posts.

The ALP personnel were directed to leave to render polling stations in those areas insecure, strike fear into the heart of residents and prevent them from exercising their voting right, Tajuddin said.

On the other hand, an inhabitant of Chaharbolak district said over the past few days, many villages had fallen to Taliban. The areas were stable in the not-so-distant past, he added.

Area people were faced with problems at the hands of the both warring parties, he complained, lamenting that civilian homes were being. Security forces were yet to launch operations against insurgents, he said.

Zabihullah Kakar, a public representative, also voiced concern at the situation. Despite the presence of the Shaheen Military Corps and other army brigades, many villages were unstable, he said.

“The destabilisation of certain villages in the presence of enough military personnel raises disturbing questions,” remarked the provincial council member, who asked the security forces to take effective steps to control the situation.

On the other hand, police spokesman Sherjan Durrani said pullback from some areas was aimed at better defence of those villages. He rejected the claims that those areas were being destabilised intentionally.

He explained policemen had been ordered to leave certain posts and reinforce checkpoints in other villages. He promised the Taliban would be expelled soon from unstable areas.

sa/mud

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