Englishnews/ Capture of Taliban leaders strikes major blow

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SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association)

Afghanistan’s National Directorate for Security (NDS), the country’s intelligence arm, has announced capturing two senior Taliban leaders including Anas Haqqani, son of terror czar Mawlawi Jalaludin Haqqani.

Haqqani was the founder of dreadful terror group Haqqani Network, which has been fighting Afghan and NATO-led forces stationed in Afghanistan.

Spokesman for NDS Haseeb Sediqi, in talks with reporters, said on Thursday that security personnel had arrested Anas Haqqani and Hafiz Rashid, a senior commander of the outfit during operations in the eastern region on Tuesday night.

Afghan political observers believe that capturing senior Taliban leaders as Anas Haqqani could strike a major blow to the Taliban and the associated outfits as it demoralizes the armed insurgents.

“Certainly, the arrest of Anas Haqqani is a major setback to the Taliban militants and associated insurgents in Afghanistan,” political analyst Khan Mohammad Daneshjo told Xinhua.

Daneshjo said the arrested Anas Haqqani, besides leading the propaganda machine of Taliban outfit, had also visited Gulf countries to raise fund for militants and his arrest would reduce Taliban financial resources. Haqqani network, the military wing of Taliban outfit, has been operating in the capital city Kabul, southeast and eastern region of Afghanistan and besides targeting government facilities also attack luxury hotels and restaurants frequented by Afghan and foreign dignitaries.

Languishing in the Afghan government custody, both Anas Haqqani and Hafiz Rashid, according to the spokesman for NDS, had played important role in planning terrorist attacks including launching the deadly suicide ones to target Afghan and the NATO-led forces stationed in Afghanistan.

Anas Haqqani, according to Afghan political observers, had also played important role in strategic decision-making for the armed outfit.

Hafiz Rashid had equipped suicide bombers, chosen their targets and transported them from Pakistan’s lawless tribal areas to Afghanistan for attack.

“Arresting senior militants’ commanders like Anas Haqqani and Hafiz Rashid from one hand disheartened Taliban fighters, and on the other, encourages Afghan national security forces to mount pressure on militants,” renowned Afghan political analyst Jawed Kohistani said in talks with a local media the other day.

Meanwhile, Taliban outfit in a statement posted on its website confirmed the arrest but insisted Anas Haqqani had no role in politics and other activities.

According to the statement of the Taliban outfit, both Anas Haqqani and Hafiz Rashid were arrested by Americans in Bahrain on October 12 and later had been handed over to Kabul.

“Apprehending big fishes such as Haqqani’s son Anas raises the ray of hope among Afghans for having viable peace and stability,” the analyst Kohistani said in talks with local media.

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