5000 People Armed in Balkh to Fight Taliban

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KABUL: More than 5000 thousand residents had taken arm against the increased violence and the Taliban offenses in their districts, told Mohammad Farhad Azimi, the Balkh governor.

A significant number of those armed are affiliated with political parties such as Jamiat-e-Islami, Harakt-e-Islami, Jonbesh-e-Melli, Wahdat-e-Islami Nawin-e-Afghanistan, and Wahdat-e-Islami.

“2500 individuals alone are from Atta Mohammad Noor, head of Jamiat-e-Islami, and more than 3000 others are from other parties,” Azimi said.

The Balkh governor also stated that these groups have positioned themselves in various Balkh districts and the Mazar-e-Sharif entrance.

Sayed Zaher Masrur, a parliament member representing Balkh, in a display of support, claimed that “Ever since the public uprising force has started to stand with the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF), the conditions are less dire and not as many districts are falling to the Taliban.”

Many, however, remain dubious of such uprising forces’ loyalty and claim they further contribute to already high violence.

Security Analyst, Jamil Aryan, said, “[these forces] have no aspirations. All the soldier is concerned with is from which nationality, which ethnic group, who is it is connected to and what they gain.”

One of Balkh residents, Zahra Hassanzada, told reporters, “People are concerned with what will happen.”

Foreign Troops’ withdrawal from the northern provinces’ districts has many of the Afghan citizens concerned due to the Taliban’s constant push to claim the authority of more districts.