News - Afghanistan
The governor of Afghanistan's eastern Kunar province said that the continued shelling of districts close to the Pakistani border require a response, but the Afghan security forces are too poorly equipped.
Governor Fazlullah Wahidi has raised the matter of an ongoing cross-border shelling from Pakistan for almost two years, without much attention given to it by Kabul until recent months.
However, Wahidi stepped up his warnings of worsening security on Saturday and is now calling for the Afghan security forces to be better armed to retaliate to the attacks.
"We have a complete security force, but we don't have the improved weapons to react back," he told TOLOnews, adding that the shellings pose a major threat for the province.
"We have control in the districts and there is security to some extent – schools are open – but insecurity is increasing because of the shelling attacks from outside, and still the foreign security forces are not cooperating with us to solve it," he said.
Wahidi urged those countries which have signed the strategic long term deals with Afghanistan to take action and protect the provinces or the Afghan people will lose their trust in such agreements.
Kunar province is where the Pakistan government claimed this week that Mullah Fazlullah – an insurgent leader suspected of ordering the shooting of Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai – is living.
Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khan last weekend asked for US help to get Mullah Fazlullah extradited back to Pakistan for his involvement in the shooting as well as directing numerous attacks against the Pakistani military.
Islamabad claimed to have shared its intelligence dossier on the Mullah with Kabul and Isaf, saying that he is located in the Kamadesh and Chapa Dara districts in the border provinces of Nuristan and Kunar.
However, the Karzai government responded with outright denial that the Mullah is in Afghanistan, choosing instead to make the point that because Pakistan has not dealt with the insurgent networks in its tribal north-west or handed over Afghan Taliban leaders as requested in the past, it too would not move against Fazlullah.
"There are terrorists living on the Pakistani soil for many, many years and no action has been taken against them", Afghan Interior Ministry Sediq Sediqi said Wednesday.
The Afghan government has paid more attention to the cross-border shelling in recent months, most notably after the lawmakers sacked the country's defense and interior ministers in August over the lack of action on the matter.
When the new Interior Minister Mujtaba Patang was appointed in September, one of his first decisions was to say he will bulk up the police along the border.