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Afghan Villagers Rise Up Against Taleban – ‘Fed Up With Atrocities’

Source: NST

KAKARAN VILLAGE, Afghanistan: Dozens of Afghan villagers have taken up arms against the Taliban in one of their key southern heartlands, the latest in a series of such uprisings, villagers and officials say.

Analysts caution that the movements could be attempts by local militia  leaders to reassert their authority ahead of the 2014 withdrawal of NATO  troops, or could be orchestrated as part of a government strategy.

The uprising in Kandahar province, the birthplace of the Islamist  militants, was launched by a tribal elder at the weekend after the militia  threatened to kill one of his sons for joining a US-backed community police  force.
Haji Abdul Udood, a tribal chief in the province’s troubled Panjwayi  district, said the villagers were fed up with Taliban “atrocities”, including  roadside bombings that kill more civilians than troops.
More than 60 youths had joined the movement in just two days, Udood told  AFP in Kakaran village, about 10 kilometres (six miles) west of Kandahar city.
In their first encounter with the Taliban on Sunday night — in an attack  backed by police — three Taliban were killed and dozens were forced to flee to  the mountains, Udood and a police official said.
General Abdul Raziq, the provincial police chief in Kandahar, said he had  provided the villagers with arms and ammunition.
“Right now we are providing training to the villagers. We have provided  guns and bullets and we are supporting this,” Raziq told AFP.
He said that the youths taking part in the uprising would be recruited to  the Afghan Local Police (ALP), a US-sponsored community police force assigned  to fight the Taliban in remote villages.
The police chief said the move was effective in the battle against the  Taliban and that it could deal the militants with a major blow.
Udood said he started the uprising after the Taliban tried to kill one of  his sons, accusing him of joining the ALP.
“I and my eight sons took up our guns and told the Taliban we will fight  you. Three other villagers who had lost members of their family to Taliban  bombings joined us, more people joined us,” he added. — AFP

 

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