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Afghanistan warns Pakistan over Taliban sanctuaries

Kabul: Afghanistan has once again urged Pakistan to end its support to the Taliban who are hell-bent to destroy the gains made by the Afghan government in Kabul over the last decade.

Taliban fighters are capturing the main centres of various rural districts of Afghanistan and have intensified attacks on Afghan forces.

More than 1,000 soldiers of Afghan defense forces are martyred and more than 3,000 civilians have been killed ever since foreign forces announced the withdrawal in April.

Afghanistan Ambassador to India Farid Mamundzay speaking to ANI said, “We have from time to time said the presence of shuras in Quetta and Peshawar and elsewhere in Pakistan has been something of great concern to us. Their families still live there. You may remember that the Taliban delegation visiting for a consultation to Pakistan. So yes they have the support infrastructure currently present in Pakistan. We would want to see that changed.”

The envoy also said that Pakistan support to terrorism can hurt the country itself. Emphasising that the security situation in Afghanistan is fluid and deteriorating, the Afghan envoy said that the Taliban need to cease violence and there should be an end to the bloodshed. 

More than 200,000 Afghan civilians are displaced already. There is an active fight going on between Afghan forces and Taliban fighters in 200 districts out of total 375. There is also trouble in 18 border districts that share a border with several countries Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Iran. 

The Afghan envoy to India said that Afghan forces are giving tough fight to the Taliban and have regained nearly 10 districts in last 3 days and things will be back in control in the coming days.

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“Situation since April 21 has been very dire and challenging. Taliban have managed to capture many centres of the districts. Remember capturing the entire districts is a very difficult task, so what Taliban do they capture main centre building so they are not fully in control of districts per se but they captured the capital. It’s still a big gain for them and we are concerned about it since they have intensified their military offensive,” the Afghan envoy said in an interview to ANI.

“We are concerned about the recent intensity of violence and we call on Taliban to cease the violence since the withdrawal of international forces is complete to a large extent and remaining forces are leaving Afghanistan. Soon it’s time to put an end to the bloodshed of innocent people and stop fighting with their own forces,” Farid Mamundzay added.

Many Afghans are fleeing the country fearing the return of the dark phase of the Taliban era. However, the Afghan envoy disagreed and said the situation is not that bad and this was expected.

“We are not heading towards dark age. We are having a turbulent time. We must remember there were 40 plus NATO member countries fighting the war on terror and after their withdrawal, it was expected that we would go through a difficult period and we are in that difficult time now,” Farid said.

“We are not just fighting for Afghanistan, we are not fighting a civil war, we are fighting against 20 terror groups, so responsible regional forces must help,” the Afghan ambassador added.

He also urged India to use its influence with regional players like Iran and Russia to bring the Taliban back to the negotiation table.

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(ANI)

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