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Taliban blocks Maimana-Jawzjan highway for traffic

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Taliban blocks Maimana-Jawzjan highway for traffic

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On
Nov 20, 2017 - 15:59

MAIMANA (Pajhwok): Taliban blocked the Maimana-Jawzjan highway for traffic on Monday, leaving many people on both sides of the road, passengers said.

The driver of a passenger vehicle, wishing to go unnamed, told Pajhwok Afghan News dozens of automobiles were stranded in the Qushlaq area of Khwaja Sabzposh district.

“Women and children pleaded with the Taliban to let them pass the area, but the insurgents didn’t listen to their requests,” the driver said.

Mohammad Sharif, a resident f Maimana, said he was travelling along with his family to Mazar-I-Sharif, but they were stranded in Khwaja Sabzposh due to the road blockade.

However, Haji Amin, a local Taliban commander, told Pajhwok the highway was blocked by local elders and religious to protest the detention of three locals by intelligence agents.

He said the Taliban supported the protestors. “The road would remain blocked until the demand of these protestors is answered positively,” the rebel commander said.

Khwaja Sabzposh district chief, Abdullah Masumi, confirmed the road blockade, accusing Amin of seizing three security personnel, a including public order policeman, an Afghan National Army (ANA) soldier and a traffic officer from a passenger bus one and a half month ago.

He said the Taliban had killed the ANA officer but the policeman and traffic officer were still in their captivity. Afghan forces then detained three suspects -- relatives of Haji Amin.

Now the militants have blocked the highway to force the government to release the three detainees, according to the district chief.

Pajhwok tried to contact police and intelligence officials for comment but failed. However, a security official confirmed three relatives of Amin were being held by the National Directorate of Security.

mds/mud