News - Afghanistan
Afghanistan's Ministry of Interior said at least four unofficial armed groups are upsetting security in Nangarhar province with impunity, calling for the local security forces to put an end to the instability or for the security leaders to resign.
Senior Deputy Minister of Security Affairs Gen. Abdul Rahman said that the Nangarhar officials were either too weak or were choosing to not stop the groups from operating.
"Some of the local officials and different people whom I do not want to name – but there are four groups – are disrupting security for their personal interests," Rahman said Saturday. "They are trying to defame Nangarhar but the weakness is them because the commandership is in their hands and they are not able to or they don't want security to be provided in Nangarhar."
Rahman said the local officials responsible for security should resign if they are incapable of controlling such groups.
"According to the law, all security organisations whether it's police, national army, national security, or local police have their capabilities, and if they don't or can't use this capability, or if the people do not consider them the governing power, then it is because of the weak leadership of that department and its leader should resign," he said.
However, Nangarhar provincial spokesperson dismissed Rahman's suggestion that local officials were supporting the groups, saying that they are endeavoring to stop the unauthorised armed men from roaming.
"The security forces have been told to disarm unauthorised armed men, and we have had some achievements in this regard, but there are still some issues to resolve of which the governor has informed the responsible officials in the capital [Kabul]," Ahmad Zia Abdulzai told TOLOnews. "We reject the idea that local officials allegedly support some of the unauthorised armed groups. On the contrary, there has been a fight against it and the capital is also informed to support the fight."
This comes as local residents have been taking up arms to fight insurgents over the past few months. Provincial officials have warned that those who are found involved in transferring weapons illegally in Nangarhar's city and districts will be treated within the law as the law states.