Afghanistan Ghazni province on verge of falling to Taliban: MP

Afghanistan Ghazni province on verge of falling to Taliban: MP

KABUL - Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah on Monday said at the Council of Ministers Meeting that if government does not end the security crisis, it will have to accept the fact that foreign troops will remain in the country indefinitely.  

This came as he voiced his concerns over an increase in insurgent attacks on cities and said armed groups had changed tactics and have focused on cities and that such attacks have increased the number of casualties. 

“Insurgents recently increased attacks on cities but the investigative agencies should be empowered,” said Abdullah. 

According to Abdullah, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson last week, during his visit to Kabul, discussed issues around maintaining security, insurgent safe havens in a neighboring country, holding transparent elections as scheduled and fighting corruption.

Abdullah said four committees are working on these issues.  

Abdullah also demanded that Afghan intelligence agencies do more to prevent further attacks.  

Interior ministry officials meanwhile said they have comprehensive plans to decrease civilian and soldier fatalities.  

"Interior ministry plans to make small check posts bigger, to enable them to resist attacks and to decrease casualties. Thus a big plan is underway in the ministry," interior ministry spokesman Najib Danish said. 

In the meantime, Ghazni provincial officials said on Monday the Taliban attacked Khogyani district on Sunday night in a bid to take control of the area.

However, security forces fought back and killed a number of insurgents.
According to the officials, a group of Taliban fighters attacked Khogyani district police headquarters, which is six km away from Ghazni’s provincial capital. 

Nine police were killed in the attack and four others wounded, said the officials.

"Nine police have been killed and four others wounded. Taliban also suffered losses. Police weapons have been destroyed and the attack happened because of the negliegince of the police chief and other officials," Ghazni provincial council acting director Hassan Reza Yusufi said.

According to local officials, one year ago the district collapsed to the Taliban. At the time government was using a check-post as the district governor and police headquarters’ base.

The building however was gutted in a fire allegedly set by the Taliban on Sunday night. 

"If government does not pay attention to Ghazni security, a few other districts will also collapse," Ghazni MP Chaman Shah Etemadi said.