The Taliban have killed six Afghan security personnel whilst they traveled to Kunduz. It is said that Taliban forces abducted 200 passengers though all but 26 of them were freed.
Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid confirmed the abduction and deaths of the Afghani security personnel.
Mujahid reiterated that the abductees were not civilians and that they have been transferred to a safe location. He also confirmed that the six dead had made an attempt to escape custody.
Afghani president, Ashraf Ghani released a statement showing his concern for those abducted and condolences to the families of the deceased. The president also called for security agencies to take action against the Taliban.
The statement cites that President Ghani “is deeply saddened by today’s incident in Kunduz where a number of passengers were abducted and killed by Taliban”.
“The President instructed Security & Defense Agencies to take urgent measures to rescue our countrymen and track down the abductors. The President offers his deep condolences to the families of the martyred passengers & prays to Almighty Allah to grant them patience”, reads the statement issued from his office.
Despite this, the Taliban insists that those abducted and killed were not civilians.
“26 soldiers & policemen traveling to Kunduz city, detained this morning on highway in Angor-bagh region, after verification transferred to after verification transferred to safe areas, 6 soldiers killed, while trying to flee, remnants are under Mujahideen detention.” says Zabihullah Mujahid.
Militancy of the Taliban has in recent weeks around Afghanistan following the death of former leader, Mullah Akhtar Mansour last week.
Hekmatullah Azamy, a researcher at Center for Conflict and Peace Studies in Kabul says, “I have heard Taliban had some finger print system to identify these people. Long back, they also had copied information from social media accounts and would check any suspected people with that database”.
He adds that whoever they are, it shows Taliban are targeting soft targets as a means of spreading terror. And those who are not killed may be saved to facilitate an exchange in the future.
“If that’s true they [Taliban] have biometric data of Afghan National Security Forces, they may create more problems for security officials to travel”.
Malik Achakzai covering, Afghanistan, Pakistan, politics, culture, development, relations, climate change and religions. Having master in Mass Communication from University of Balochistan, have worked for several media organizations including Voice of America, United Press International, The Friday Times, Afghanistan Times, Daily Times Pakistan, News Lens Pakistan as freelancer for last 8 years. @AfghanJourno