Fighters loyal to the leader of the splinter group of the Taliban, Mullah Rasoul, in Badghis province, reportedly announced war against fighters of the Taliban faction led by Akhtar Mohammad Mansoor. The commander of the splinter group accused Mansoor of killing and detaining Taliban leaders and said the Pakistani spy agency and Mansoor have pushed Afghanistan towards destruction.
After several days of fighting between the two groups of the Taliban in Shindand district of western Herat province, fighters loyal to Mullah Rasoul hoisted the Taliban’s flag under the name of the Taliban’s High Council in Qads district of Badghis province and vowed to fight supporters of Akhtar Mansoor.
Commander of the splinter group in Badghis said that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Akhtar Mansoor have been involved in killing a number of Taliban leaders, particularly the group’s supreme leader Mullah Omar.
“The reasons for our differences [with Akhtar Mansoor] were that Mullah Obaidullah has been martyred in prison, Mullah Beradar is in jail and Mullah Omar was killed by Akhtar Mohammad Mansoor. Akhtar Mansoor has created an office in Qatar and he along with the Pakistani spy agency has taken a number of decisions without coordinating them with the Taliban, which are not acceptable for us,” said Mollah Ghafar Tofan, military commander of Mollah Rasoul’s splinter group in Badghis. He added that Pakistan and other countries have pushed Afghanistan towards fratricide.
Meanwhile, Badghis provincial council expressed its deep concerns over gathering of the Taliban in Qads district of the province and said that infighting between the Taliban will affect civilians. Mohammad Naser Nazari, a member of the council, said that the government should not allow militants to mobilize the public.
“People expect government to conduct airstrikes, wherever they organize gatherings. It should not allow the Taliban to organize gatherings,” he added.
Badghis police chief, Abdul Rauf Taj, urged people not to allow the Taliban to organize gatherings in their villages.
“People should not allow the enemies to organize such sessions. The Taliban by such events want to weaken people’s morale,” he said. Fighting between fighters of Akhtar Mansoor and Mullah Rassoul in Zer Koh area of Shindand district of Herat left more than 200 people dead, including scores of civilians. The probability of infighting between Taliban in Badghis has raised concerns of people in Badghis.