MPs Seek Military Help For Faryab's Ghormach District

MPs from northern Faryab province on Tuesday said that at least 30 police force members have been killed and captured following the fall of Ghormach district to the Taliban on Sunday.

Among those captured is Abdul Majid Glimbaf, the district’s security chief.

The MPs urged government to send in reinforcements before a local army base falls to the insurgents.

“After the fall of the center of Ghormach to militants, at least 100 soldiers fled to the mountains. The government failed to equip and help them due to bad weather, therefore the Taliban launched a heavy clash where 20 or 30 soldiers were shot dead in one check post and their bodies are still there,” said Naqibullah Fayiq, an MP from Faryab.

“At least 19 other police force members including the police chief for Ghormach – who has sustained an injury to his shoulder – have been captured by the militants and there is no information about them so far,” he added.

Local officials in Faryab meanwhile said an army base – comprised of 100 soldiers – has been under siege by the Taliban for several days. They said the military base will fall to insurgents if reinforcements are not sent in quickly.

“There are sufficient forces in Faryab but there is no coordination among them. They do not have any morale against the enemy,” said Abdul Rahman Turkestani, member of Faryab Provincial Council.

“We urge the government to send reinforcement troops to the district and also to use the local forces in order to restore security there,” he added.

The Ministry of Interior (MoI) however has not commented on the deaths of police officers and on the issue of police force members being captured.

MoI spokesman Sediq Seddiqi meanwhile said the district will be cleared of militants on Tuesday.

“Reinforcement troops have been sent to Ghormach and our goal is to clear the district of Taliban. The district will be cleared today [Tuesday],” Seddiqi told TOLOnews.

In addition, some critics and senators pointed out that the first Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum’s trip to Faryab will help ensure lasting security in the province.

“The first vice president went to Faryab and spent a lot of money but his trip did not have positive results. He could not ensure even relative security there,” said senator Qais Wakili.

“The government should establish security check posts in areas which are cleared of Taliban in order to prevent their return,” he said.

Dostum who spent a month in Faryab in August managed to clear several areas of Taliban; however, the militants returned as soon as Dostum returned to Kabul.

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