Taliban staging massive house-to-house sweep in Afghanistan


Zabiullah Mujahid, spokesman for the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, listens the question of a reporter. File photo

Gulf Today Report

The Taliban are conducting a massive security sweep of Kabul and other Afghan cities, their spokesman said on Sunday, going house-to-house in search of weapons and criminals blamed for a recent spate of robberies and kidnappings.

Government forces have arrested dozens of criminals, kidnappers and smugglers in operations across Kabul, a Taliban government spokesman said on Sunday.

The operation, which started on Friday, has alarmed many who fear being targeted because of their association with the previous Western-backed regime or the US-led foreign forces who finally withdrew on August 31.


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The clearance operations began in the capital and neighbouring provinces two days ago, and will continue, Zabiullah Mujahid said in a press conference. The aim was to collect weapons and arrest suspects, he added.

“The operation was successful,” he said. Hundreds of light and heavy weapons were confiscated, including rocket-launchers and grenades, he said. Over 60,000 rounds of ammunition were also uncovered, as well as 13 armored vehicles and 13 tons of gunpowder and explosives.

The Taliban called the sweep a “clearing operation”.

Some irate residents posted videos on social media showing homes they said had been trashed during Taliban searches, but several people told AFP their encounters had been polite and cursory.

“It was just my nephew at home when they came and they made a big mess,” said one resident, who asked not to be named, showing AFP a series of pictures that revealed considerable disruption.

The Taliban called the sweep a “clearing operation”.

“We are trying to take steps against those kidnappers, thieves and looters who have weapons in their hands and threaten the lives of the people,” spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told a news conference.

He said authorities had discovered two kidnap victims during the operation, and also freed two teenage girls who they found chained in a basement.

Mujahid said light and heavy weapons, explosives, radio equipment and drones had been seized, as well as vehicles belonging to the military or government.



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