Saturday, April 28, 2007

Living under the Taliban

This community is profoundly broken by the clash between the government and the Taliban. That the Taliban have credibility, at least for some people in Musa Qala, cannot be good news for the government.

Institute for War & Peace Reporting

"Fundamentalist rule has returned to Musa Qala – and some residents have never been happier"
"Musa Qala formally fell to the Taleban in February, barely four months after a controversial agreement under which village elders promised to keep the fundamentalists out in return for a British withdrawal."
"While the government tries to decide on its course, local residents have had to continue with their lives."
"Many say they are happier now than they have been for years – and more than willing to trade a certain amount of freedom for some peace and security."
" 'Security is very good: there are no thieves, no kidnappers, everyone lives in safety and is able to get on with their lives. We are all happy.' "
"His assessment is in sharp contrast to official pronouncements. 'We have 900 families registered as refugees from Musa Qala,' said Abdulstar Muzahari, head of the department of refugees. 'None of them have gone back.' "
" Sayed Ahmad Akaa, father of three, agrees 'You could not pay me to go back to Musa Qala,' he told IWPR. 'My children cannot go to school there, I cannot live.' "
"But those who remain say life has never been better."
"Security concerns among Helmand is are wider than the threat from insurgents. Official corruption and police inaction made the cities unsafe"
" 'If the government cannot control the situation, we have to let the Taleban rule,' said one shopkeeper,"

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