Taliban’s Intelligence Directorate Orders District Representatives To List Former ANDSF Members

Afghanistan Security Forces

What happened? Several district representatives (Wakil Gozar) and soldiers of the previous government of Afghanistan confirmed to Reporterly that the Taliban’s General Directorate of Intelligence has arrested former members of security forces, especially the special forces units of Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF).

Go deeper:

  • Reliable sources told Reporterly that the intelligence directorate of the Taliban in each district, particularly in Kabul, has issued special forms.
  • These forms have been designed to extract all personal details of the former soldiers who live in the neighbourhoods of each district.
  • Mukhtar (pseudonym), one of the district representatives in Kabul, said that the Taliban intelligence agents have warned each of the district representatives to identify, record and provide details of all those who had previously worked in the National Police, Army and National Directorate of Security.
  • He said that most of the representatives have refused to abide by the Taliban order, but Taliban intelligence agents have warned them that if an ANDSF member is found in their district, they will be severely punished.
  • At the same time, a former police chief told Reporterly that the senior security officials of the former government who are now abroad contacted him and asked about his current situation.
  • According to him, these officials have advised them to stay low or leave the district for a neighbouring country to protect their lives.
  • The former soldier said that some of his colleagues have been arrested and tortured by the Taliban before, and several of them have been missing. He added that most likely all have been killed by the Taliban.
  • Several audio tapes and a list of ex-soldiers, most of whom are abroad, have been circulating on social media, that talks about Taliban’s attempts to arrest former members of ANDSF.
  • Bilal Karimi, one of the Taliban spokespersons, called the list published on social media, fake.
  • After the fall of the republic order on August 15, 2021, hundreds of former soldiers who have been unable to leave the country have been arrested, tortured, and even killed by the Taliban.

Back story: The Taliban authorities had announced an amnesty for former government officials and Afghan National Security and Defense Force members on August 17, 2021.

  • And despite media reports, they have rejected as baseless allegations that their fighters have carried out targeted killings of some former Afghan officials who remained in the country.

Zoom out: However, Taliban forces continue to carry out revenge killings and enforced disappearances of former government officials and security force personnel. Even, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) issued a report in August 2022 detailing numerous cases of killings or disappearances committed by Taliban forces since August 2021.  UNAMA recorded at least 160 extrajudicial killings of former government and security officials by members of the de facto authorities between 15 August 2021 and 15 June 2022.

  • Other human rights groups have also accused the Taliban of carrying out widespread revenge killings, enforced disappearances, and torture of former Afghan officials, security officers, and individuals who cooperated with the departed U.S.-led military presence in Afghanistan.
  • A seven-month investigation by the New York Times found that nearly 500 former government workers and members of the security forces were killed or forcibly disappeared during the Taliban’s first six months in power.
  • What remains to be seen is how this new order to list all details of former ANDSF members will play out in the months to come. Taliban fighters have also been notoriously using biometric devices to identify former government officials and used their data against them.
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