Ghazni IDPs seek Int’l agencies help in brokering a truce

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Ghazni: Hundreds of war-devastated families who have been displaced due to ongoing fierce conflicts in the Arzo district of southern Ghazni province urge international organizations to mediate between the warring sides in Afghanistan so that they agree to a temporary truce.

Arzo area, only five kilometers west of Ghazni city, the provincial capital, has been caught between continuous crossfires of the Afghan forces and the Taliban for the last four months, forcing 850 families to leave their homes and take refuge in the provincial capital.

The Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and war victims say they were only able to evacuate their women and children but weren’t given a chance – neither by the Taliban nor by security personnel – to withdraw their belongings from their houses.

“Afghan commando forces would capture any person they could lay their hands on during the fight while Taliban used our houses as strongholds”, they lamented, adding that local elders had to go to government officials to secure the release of their youths unreasonably arrested by Afghan forces.

Arzo residents strongly urged the United Nations (UN and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to broker a ceasefire between the government and the Taliban. They complained that the raging war devastated more than a hundred of their houses.

Abdul Alim Noori, the Afghan Red Crescent Society (ARCS) head for Ghazni, told Afghan Peace Watch (APW) that Arzo was harshly hit by war as around 30 civilians had been killed and more than 50 others injured in the area.

“We are trying to convince both sides to declare a ceasefire so that the displaced families at least get a chance to take their belongings from their houses.”