Where are Afghanistan's soldiers now? Reports say many joined Taliban

Many soldiers might have left Afghanistan fearing persecution though the Taliban had announced an amnesty for all. Many joined the Northern Resistance Front. And a considerable number might have joined the Taliban, reports claim. 
Afghan National Army commando forces before the fall of Afghanistan in the hand of the Taliban. (AFP)
Afghan National Army commando forces before the fall of Afghanistan in the hand of the Taliban. (AFP)
Published on Sep 08, 2021 08:38 PM IST
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Byhindustantimes.com | Written by Poulomi Ghosh

Analysing recent images of the Taliban fighters, the UK army has deciphered that some of the techniques that they are using are advanced, mostly used in the UK or the US. This analysis has made them believe that Afghan soldiers, previously trained by the US and the UK are now fighting for the Taliban, at least some of them, reports said, quoting The Times.

'An untrained force would normally hold the weapon randomly, but if your hand is behind the pistol grip and your finger is over the trigger guard, then you're not going to have a negligent discharge and no one else is going to fire it either," a UK defence official said to The Times. However, many think that this is wide speculation as the Taliban are also fighters and they must have taught their soldiers how to handle the weapons. The UK ministry of defence said they do not have any evidence to claim that Afghan soldiers have actually joined the Taliban.

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But even if this is the case, it won't be surprising, analysts told The Times as many of them might have previous ties to the Taliban when the Taliban were in power between 1996 and 2001. Plus, there are concerns of safety for family members which might drive them to join the Taliban.

Barbara Kelemen, an intelligence analyst, said they had assessed 'reasonable probability' some Afghan soldiers had defected and switched to the Taliban. "Among reasons that would prompt some soldiers to join the Taliban are their previous ties to the group, economic incentives and even personal or familial safety if they perceived defeat for government forces was likely," she said.

Many soldiers are believed to have left the country fearing persecution by the Taliban though they announced amnesty. Many went to Panjshir to join the Resistance Front. 

Announcing amnesty for all those who had fought against the Taliban, the group had welcomed soldiers, pilots, soon after it captured Kabul. After the withdrawal of foreign troops came to a close and the countries concluded their evacuation process, Taliban fighters were seen taking control of the entire security of the country. The interim government has also been announced by the Taliban on Tuesday.

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