Residents of Mirza Olang valley in Sar-e-Pul province criticize government for not launching a military operation to clear the area of insurgents.
Mirza Olang Waiting For Military Action Six Days After Massacre
Despite six days having passed since the massacre in Mirza Olang valley of Sayyad district of northern Sar-e-Pul province, the security forces have not yet launched military operations to clear the area of insurgents.
The residents of Mirza Olang were blaming the local police and public unrest forces of “negligence” over the massacre in the valley.
The residents of the valley criticized the security forces over their late response to the insurgents’ attacks.
Noor Jahan, a resident of Mirza Olang who lost five of his family members in the Taliban and Daesh insurgents attack, said: “They (security force members) escaped first and left us and we escaped later. They are to blame for the situation we are in. We were attacked (by militants) when we were escaping.”
“The residents of Mirza Olang lost everything,” said Fatima, another resident of the area.
However, Habibullah Qasemi, a commander of local police in the valley, rejected the claims.
“The enemy’s attack was strong. The check post of the public unrest forces posts had collapsed. The road (to the valley) was about to close,” he said.
Reports said that when Daesh and Taliban attacked the valley, there were only 90 local police and public unrest force members present.
The residents of the valley have appealed to the government to launch a military operation in Mirza Olang to clear the insurgents.
TOLOnews reporter Sharif Amiry who visited the valley with the help of the security forces, said “most of the families have been displaced from their houses and had moved to center of the province, a mosque in the valley and other parts of Sar-e-Pul.”
Amiry says that the security forces have blocked the way out for the insurgents from the valley, but to date no counter operations have been launched to clear the insurgents.
He says that “the flag of the Taliban has been seen in the some of the check posts.”
“I would have launched a military operation the moment the government forces arrived, if I was commanding the war,” Sar-e-Pul governor Mohammad Zahir Wahdat said.
“The Taliban appeared in the area at night. Their vehicles stopped at the back of the valley and then they open fire on us from behind trees,” said Nooruddin, the commander of Army’s 3rd Battalion.
This followed few days after hundreds Taliban and Daesh fighters reportedly launched an attack on the valley, killing over 52 villagers and taking hundreds more hostage.
The insurgents captured hundreds of the villagers, of which 235 were released late Tuesday after mediation by local elders. The residents believed that the insurgents still take captive some of the families.
Reports on Thursday also emerged that 14 more captives were released and arrived in the capital of the province. They included very old men and women.
The attack in Mirza Olang sparked strong reactions among Afghans over the brutality of the insurgents against the innocent villagers.
Official figures from local offices show that at least 500 families have been displaced in Mirza Olang in the past five days.
Sayyad is in western part of Sar-e-Pul which is also bordered by northern Jawzjand and Faryab provinces.