Afghan Taliban Commander Joins National Resistance Front (NRF) In Afghanistan's Baghlan Province, Vows To Fight 'Hirelings Of Pakistan'

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July 22, 2022

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An Afghan Taliban commander has parted ways with the Islamic Emirate (the Taliban jihadi organization that took control of Afghanistan in August 2021) and joined the anti-government National Resistance Front (NRF) along with seven of his fighters in the Khost district of the country's northern Baghlan province, according to Afghan media.[1]

Aamaj News, a Pashtu-Dari language news agency, tweeted that Commander Azizullah Asefi had joined the group of NRF commander Baryalay Sangin to free his native Khost district from the Taliban.


Commander Azizullah Asefi accompanied by his fighters.

Aamaj News also posted a video of Asefi on Twitter in which the anti-Taliban commander is seen flanked by seven masked fighters equipped with small and heavy weapons and standing on a mountain.

Speaking to the camera, Asefi says: "I was helping the [Islamic] Emirate. However, they were imposing restrictions more and more on the poor and helpless nation. But my conscience did not accept this. That's why I joined the resistance front. Now, I am under the command of Commander Baryalay. I will carry out whatever order he gives as long as I am alive and as long as I have blood in my body. I am fighting the hirelings of Pakistan [i.e., the Afghan Taliban]. Allah willing, we will soon capture the Khost region and free it from the Pakistani hirelings."

Since the Taliban came to power in August 2021 the anti-Taliban government National Resistance Front (NRF) has, under the leadership of Ahmad Massoud, son of the late Northern Alliance leader Ahmad Shah Massoud, been fighting the Taliban. The group is strong in Panjshir and Baghlan provinces, particularly in the Andrab region of Baghlan province. The NRF also has fighters in Khost, Farang, Andrab, Deh Salah, and adjoining districts. NRF fighters are familiar with this mountainous region, which is said to be a stronghold of the group and offers a route in and out of the Panjshir Valley.

]

On the other hand, the Taliban are not familiar with the region, and the local population is non-Pashtun and supports the NRF.

Meanwhile, fighters from another Taliban anti-group known as the Liberation Front has reportedly repulsed 13 attacks by Taliban forces in the Khost and Farang districts of Baghlan province. "The Liberation Front has announced that Taliban's operation led by Qari Fasihuddin [chief of staff of the Islamic Emirate] in Khost and Farang Baghlan areas has failed and 13 attacks by Taliban on three bases of the Liberation Front in Khost have been repelled," Zabihullah Noori, an Afghan journalist tweeted.

 

 

[1] Twitter.com/aamajnews_FA/status/1538141588710473728, June 18, 2022; Twitter.com/ZNoori/status/1547869418323005440, July 15, 2022.

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