Kandahar [Afghanistan], August 4 (ANI): Taliban has killed around 900 people in Afghanistan's Kandahar province in the past month and a half, a former police chief of province Tadin Khan said on Wednesday.
Khan, who is also a member of the High Council of the National Reconciliation (HCNR) has said "the Taliban group does not believe in human rights", reported TOLO News.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) issued a statement saying that Taliban forces that are advancing in Ghazni, Kandahar, and other Afghan provinces have summarily executed detained soldiers, police, and civilians with alleged ties to the Afghan government.
"Summarily executing anyone in custody, whether a civilian or combatant, is a serious violation of the Geneva Conventions and a war crime," said Patricia Gossman, associate Asia director. "Taliban commanders with oversight over such atrocities are also responsible for war crimes."
The Taliban denied the allegations, it reported further.
According to Tadin Khan, the Taliban forcefully took these 900 people from their homes and killed them.
"They possibly martyred 800 to 900 people in the past month and a half. The people have suffered enormously. The brutality that occurred in Boldak (Spin Boldak district of Kandahar) is unforgivable," said Tadin Khan.
The HRW statement also said: "Human Rights Watch obtained a list of 44 men from Spin Boldak, Kandahar, whom the Taliban have allegedly killed since July 16. All had registered with the Taliban before being summarily executed. Waheedullah, a police commander from Spin Boldak, had obtained a 'forgiveness' letter from the Taliban, but Taliban fighters took him from his house and executed him on August 2, activists and media monitoring these detentions in Kandahar said."
"The civilians who have worked with the government should not be targeted, it is a war crime and a violation of human rights," said Shahrzad Akbar, the head of the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC).
According to the HRW report, the Taliban after taking over the center of Malistan district in Ghazni province began searching house to house "apparently to identify residents who had worked for the provincial or district government or security forces." The Taliban "took into custody dozens of residents, some of whom were later released after being compelled to provide assurances they would not cooperate with the government," said Human Rights Watch, adding that the organization "could not confirm the status or whereabouts of those not released." TOLO News reported further.
Over the last few weeks, the Taliban have captured several districts in Afghanistan.
Nationwide, the Taliban controls 223 districts, with 116 contested and the government holding 68, according to the Long War Journal, whose calculations tally with CNN's estimates. It says 17 of 34 provincial capitals are directly threatened by the Taliban. (ANI)