Jawand district of Badghis province has fallen into the hands of the Taliban, raising existing concerns about security trends around the country despite assurances from officials.
Based on figures reviewed by TOLOnews, in the past month, 35 districts in 26 different provinces have faced terrorist attacks. Only districts in Paktika, Balkh, Panjshir, Daikundi, Ghor, Kandahar, Nimroz and Samangan have not faced major threats.
"The delay in announcement of Minister of Defense and governors, along with other challenges that the government is facing, all together result in increasing insecurity," political analyst Zareef Naseri said. "The enemy takes advantage of the opportunity and increases their attacks. This is how terrorists can put pressure on the security forces, and with an increase in battles, they want to be stronger in the peace talks," he added.
According to Bahauddin Qadesi, the Chairman of the Badghis Provincial Council, the security forces in Jawand are surrounded and require relief by reinforcements. "We want the Afghan security forces and National Security Council to pay serious attention in this regard and save the surrounded forces from the enemy," Qadesi said on Sunday.
However, Ministry of Interior (MoI) spokesman Sediq Sediqqi downplayed the severity of the situation and assured that steps were being taken to secure the district.
"Taking control of the district is not a big issue; this district was controlled by the police, and we are trying to prevent any harm to them," Sediqqi said on Sunday. "Today, we have received the aid from the national army and this issue will be resolved."
Commentators like Mirza Muhammad Yarmand, the former deputy minister of interior, has called for accountability and consequences for those responsible for Jawand's fall. "Now there is news that the district has fallen, and there are no reviews of the incident; this issue must be closely investigated, and anyone who has acted irresponsibly, whether they are a commander, district governor, MP or whoever, they must be investigated," he told TOLOnews.
Security officials have expressed optimism about the wave of counter-offensives that the Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP) have launched in various parts of the country. "The operations that our forces have started at the moment are moving forward successfully," Deputy Chief of Army Staff Murad Ali Murad said. "Our forces have had good achievements in all areas of the operations that they have started."