The video clip, appearing to have been taken by the Taliban, surfaced on Saturday indicating Taliban checkpoints had been in PD5 in Kabul – in Bagh-e-Dawood, Qale Haidar Khan and in Company area and Arghande in Paghman district.
One Taliban member had a radio with him while a second was armed. A third Taliban member appeared to have taken the video.
In the video the insurgents stopped and questioned truck drivers and at least one taxi driver on where they were heading and where they had come from. They also asked one driver about the situation along the Kabul-Ghazni highway.
One Taliban said to a truck driver: “Company area of Kabul province where Islamic Emirate Mujahideen are present and asking people and … (to the driver) how are you? You, you ok?
Staring at the driver of the truck he said: “Where have you come from?”
The driver answered he had come from Ghazni and said he was on his way to Kabul.
The Ministry of Interior, however, downplayed the claims, saying that the Afghan security forces have an active presence in the areas.
“The group’s physical presence is not lasting. They always flee from one place to another area. Our joint security forces have an active presence where the Taliban claim to be,” Tariq Arian, the ministry’s spokesperson said.
The video sparked a worried response from social media users and one resident in PD5 told Ariana news that government is not maintaining security in the area.
He said a friend had recently been shot dead by the Taliban but “government did not address the issue and police told us you [must] pay Usher (taxes) to the Taliban,” for protection.
Meanwhile, Afghan National Police said during the night Taliban’s Red Unit launched attacks on security checkpoints on the outskirts of Kabul city, including Company area.
This comes amid rising violence across the country that has sparked serious concern among the country’s leaders and the international community – especially as the Afghan government and the Taliban are still engaged in the early stages of peace negotiations in Doha.
Leaders across the world have called for a reduction in violence and an urgent ceasefire to end the ongoing conflict that is taking its toll on war-weary Afghans who have lived through almost 40 years of war.