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Kunduz residents fret over presence of illegal gunmen

Kunduz residents fret over presence of illegal gunmen

Sep 25, 2017 - 09:47

KUNDUZ CITY (Pajhwok): Some residents of northeastern Kunduz province grumble about the ubquituous presence of irresponsible gunmen, criticising the government's inaction to control them.

They want the authorities concerned to take concrete steps for collecting illlicit weapons from such individuals at the earliest possible to address people's worries about their safety.

A resident of Kunduz City, Rahimullah, told Pajhwok Afghan News said gun-toting individuals freely roamed about in the city, leaving the people worried.

“They openly move in all parts of the city. We have complained several times, but the government has so far done nothing. The officials concerned must curb their movement.”

Another inhabitant of Kunduz, Waheedullah, also called the presence of gunmen a huge problem, asking the government to rein in such elements.

“These people harass schoolgirls, kill civilians and commit robberies and kidnappings. In a word, they do whatever they want, but there is no one stopping them.”

In particular, the number of armed men has significantly risen in Khanabad district, resulting in problems for the ordinary people.

A dweller of the district, Ahmadullah, said several civilians had been killed by illegal armed men in recent years. “The gunmen force poor people into doing whatever they want.

"We have complained many times about the problem but our voice has fallen on deaf ears,” he added. A number of other residents hold similar views.

On the other hand, the provincial police chief, Brig. Gen. Abdul Hamid Hamidi, said the irresponsible armed individuals were no permitted to roam around the city.

“But in case of need, the armed men help the government within the framework of public uprising forces,” he said, adding the garrison and police prevented activities of such men.

“People may have seen some government officials’ bodyguards in plainclothes; otherwise we don’t let any irresponsible armed men move freely,” he insisted.

However, Hamidi acknowledged there were still 1,500 irresponsible gunmen in the province. He said they were trying to disarm  them as part of a new initiative.


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