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Taliban Agrees to Protesters’ Demands Amid Unrest in Afghanistan’s Badakhshan Province

Amidst ongoing unrest in Afghanistan’s Badakhshan province, the Taliban has finally agreed to accept protesters’ demands for a change of forces in the province, according to a report by Khaama Press.

Residents of Darayim and Argo districts in Badakhshan have been demanding the removal of “non-native forces” after two people were killed and another was injured in shooting incidents in the region. The protests escalated following the killings and attacks on poppy fields, with residents demanding justice and accountability from the Taliban.


Protests and Demands

The protests began on Friday, May 3rd, in Darayim, Badakhshan, and quickly spread across the province. Villagers reported that Taliban fighters fired at protesters during the initial protest, resulting in at least one casualty. According to Khaama Press, the demonstrations were sparked by Taliban fighters invading residences with the intention to burn poppy fields but ended up assaulting women in the homes. Videos circulating online showed protesters expressing their dissatisfaction with the Taliban’s presence in the province.

Residents of Darayim and Argo districts demanded the removal of “non-native forces” and urged the Taliban to address the violence and harassment perpetrated by their members. They also called for the perpetrators of the recent killings to be tried in a special court. The protests highlighted the simmering tensions between the local population and the Taliban, especially concerning security and governance issues.


Taliban’s Response and Investigation

In response to the protests, the Taliban announced that they had quelled the unrest and would hold meetings in Badakhshan to address the situation. Spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid stated in a Whatsapp message that a delegation from Kabul, led by the defence chief of staff, would travel to Badakhshan to investigate the incidents. This acknowledgment of civil disturbance by the Taliban is rare since their return to power in 2021.

The Taliban’s agreement to accept the protesters’ demands marks a significant development in the ongoing unrest in Badakhshan province. The delegation led by Taliban Chief of Army Staff Fasihuddin Fitrat aims to reduce tensions through communication and address the grievances of the local population. Additionally, eight people have been arrested during the protests, indicating a crackdown on dissent by the Taliban authorities.

The situation in Badakhshan province underscores the challenges faced by the Taliban in governing Afghanistan amid widespread unrest and discontent among the population. The protests in Darayim and Argo districts highlight the deep-seated grievances of residents against the Taliban’s presence and actions in the region. The agreement to accept the protesters’ demands and investigate the incidents demonstrates a willingness on the part of the Taliban to address the concerns of the local population. However, the true test lies in the implementation of these agreements and the resolution of underlying issues such as security, governance, and justice in the province.

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