Certain circles in the government are involved in structuring militia forces and arming local strongmen in the provinces, a number of politicians and critics said on Wednesday.
Critics said that the Afghan government, under the pretext of building security, is trying to pursue its political agendas by using public uprising forces. Critics called the move “against peace.”
Meanwhile, a former number of lawmakers in Afghanistan’s parliament have confirmed reports that the Afghan government was arming local strongmen and militia forces in the northern regions of the country.
“Arms are being distributed by the high-level government officials—this is happening particularly in northern provinces. This is a problem because some people have major influence in these provinces,” said Humayoun Humayoun, a former MP.
However, the Afghan Ministry of Interior has rejected the reports, saying it will never resort to building militia forces or arming any local commander.
“No additional budget, no additional resources and additional structure has been considered,” said Tariq Aryan, a spokesman for the Ministry of Interior.
Critics warn that such a move will worsen the security situation.
“If they do such business with the armed men, this will pose threats,” said Ismail Khan, a former mujahideen commander.
There are reports that in some districts in Baghlan and Sar-e-Pul provinces local commanders and a number of political parties have been armed by the Afghan government.
“The government plans to arm some local commanders and mujahideen commanders and get them mobilized alongside the security forces,” said Safdar Mohseni, a member of Baghlan provincial council.
“Under the pretext of security strategy or any other name you give it, this will increase insecurity,” said Assadullah Danish, the acting head of Sar-e-Pul provincial council.
Rahmatullah Nabil, the former head of National Directorate of Security (NDS) in a Facebook post said that some circles within the government are arming milia forces.
Residents in Khinjan district of Baghlan have said that local strongmen have displaced dozens of families from their native areas, adding that the local forces have also plundered all their belongings.
Meanwhile, in Kabul, some people have been armed to take security of the Muharram ceremonies in different parts of the city alongside the Afghan security forces.
In the past the Afghan local police and public uprising forces have been accused of rights violations by human rights organizations.