Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty December 11, 2014
The Pentagon says the United States no longer operates any prisons in Afghanistan after more than a decade of war.
A Pentagon spokesman announced late on December 10 that the last three detainees from the Parwan Detention Center had been released from U.S. custody.
Two of the detainees, including Redha al-Najar, were transferred into Afghan custody for possible prosecution, while the third wasn't considered a threat and is seeking resettlement in another country. In 2002, Najar was the subject of "enhanced interrogation" techniques by the CIA, according to the newly released Senate Intelligence Committee report.
The Pentagon spokesman said the U.S. Defense Department no longer operates detention facilities in Afghanistan, adding that the Afghan government will be responsible for any detention facilities. The turnover was complicated earlier this year by ongoing U.S. concerns that Afghanistan was releasing Taliban fighters who would likely return to the battlefield.
NATO combat troops are due to withdraw from Afghanistan at the end of the month. Some troops will remain to train Afghan army and police forces.
Reuters, December 07, 20144
The United States has handed to Pakistan three prisoners including a senior Taliban militant held in Afghanistan, as Washington rushes to empty its Afghan prison before losing the legal right to detain people there at the end of the year.
U.S. forces captured Latif Mehsud, the former number two commander in Pakistan's faction of the Taliban, in October 2013, in an operation that angered then Afghan president Hamid Karzai.
Mehsud, a Pakistani, and his two guards were secretly flown to Pakistan, two senior Pakistani security officials told Reuters. The U.S. military confirmed it transferred three prisoners to Pakistan's custody on Saturday, but would not reveal their identities.
"TTP senior commander Latif Mehsud who was arrested was handed over to Pakistani authorities along with his guards," one Pakistani security official said. "They reached Islamabad." The transfers coincide with a visit by outgoing U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to Afghanistan.
The U.S. Embassy in Kabul said the three prisoners had been held at a detention center near Bagram airfield, the largest U.S. base in Afghanistan.
30 July 2014
A series of major offensive efforts by the Taliban this summer has left Afghan security officials anxious and open to criticism, while experts have maintained it is largely incoherent defense policy being set by the government that is to blame.
The summer months are commonly known as the "fighting season" in Afghanistan, when weather conditions make carrying out attacks easier for insurgents. Over the past month alone, the country has witnessed two major militant offensives in strategic locations such as Sangeen district of southern Helmand province and the Hisarak district of eastern Nangarhar province.
"The movements of the enemy have expanded, they are trying to target Afghanistan's strategic locations and get control of some areas," said Najibullah Danish, the Ministry of Interior's (MoI) deputy spokesman.
Although the Afghan security forces have largely proven themselves up to the task of holding the militants at bay, refusing to concede important strategic ground for more than a few days at any given time, the bold aggression of the insurgents and a number of high-profile attacks such as the bombing in Urgoon, which left 96 innocent civilians dead, have raised major concerns about the leadership of the security forces and the policies of the Afghan government.
Many analysts, along with civil society groups, have criticized President Hamid Karzai's new order that prevents the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) from using heavy weaponry against the Taliban. They have argued the policy unduly limits the capabilities of the military, demoralizes the Afghan forces and emboldens the insurgents. But more broadly, many have said the order adds to the existing confusion surrounding the governments policy toward insurgents.
Aug. 1 2014,
Pakistan summoned Afghan Charge d 'Affaires over another "cross-border attack by terrorists" on Friday, officials said. The military earlier said that a soldier was killed when militants launched an attack from Afghan side of the border on a Pakistan army check post in Bajaur tribal agency.
The Foreign Ministry said the soldier died due to "sniper fire from the Afghan side of the border at a Pakistani military post near Ghakhai Pass in Bajaur Agency."
"It was stressed to the Charge d'Affaires that the Afghan authorities must take concrete action to stop such incidents and prevent the recurrence of cross-border fire and physical attacks by terrorists operating from Afghan territory," a Foreign Ministry statement said. Pakistan said it is the second attack on its border post this week.
July 15, 2014
The interior ministry of Afghanistan has dismissed Helmand police chief Gen. Abdul Qayum Baqizoi from his position due to deadly Taliban offensive. A spokesman for the Helmand security commandment, Abdul Ahad Chopan said Gen Baqizoi was dismissed along with another senior security official on Monday.
Chopan further added that Juma Gul Hamdard has been appointed as the new police chief of Helmand province. The two top security officials were dismissed after Taliban militants launched a deadly offensive in Helmand province around 20 days ago.
Around 800 Taliban militants initially launched attacks in Sangin district which shortly spread in three other districts. Dozens of civilians along with the Afghan national security forces were killed following the clashes which lasted over a week.