Taliban forces have arrested dozens of criminals, kidnappers and smugglers in an operation across Kabul, a Taliban government spokesman said Sunday.
The operations began in the capital and surrounding provinces two days ago and will continue, spokesman Zabiula Mujahid told a news conference. The goal of the initiative was to arrest suspects and seize weapons, he added.
“The operation was successful,” he said.
The forces seized hundreds of light and heavy weapons, including grenades and rocket launchers, the official said. More than 60,000 bullets, 13 armored vehicles and 13 tons of explosives were confiscated.
Mujahid also applauded the recent US decision to lift restrictions on some Afghan banks. The new license issued by the US Treasury Department will allow money transfers for Afghan and other businessmen, but not for members of the Taliban.
The spokesman expressed hope that the United States will lift other restrictions. Billions of dollars in Afghan funds are frozen in the United States, preventing the full functioning of Afghan public institutions.
In total, nine hijackers, six members of the Islamic State group and 53 thieves were arrested. In addition, two people who had been kidnapped were rescued.
The operation, in which the Taliban went door-to-door, has drawn criticism amid allegations of abuses against civilians — including women and ethnic minorities — at the hands of the Taliban.
“Intimidation, raids, arrests and violence against women and members of ethnic minorities must stop immediately,” tweeted Andreas von Brandt, the EU ambassador to Afghanistan, who has not returned to the country since the Taliban took power. in August.
In response to criticism, Mujahid said the operation was “well organized” and included female guards.
“Everything is for the benefit of the people. It was necessary for the people and for the government to launch this operation,” said the spokesperson.
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