Vil­lagers tell of Tal­iban, IS mas­sacre

New Straits Times - - World -

MAZAR-I-SHARIF: Tal­iban and Is­lamic State fighters un­leashed a killing spree tar­get­ing civil­ians af­ter cap­tur­ing a re­mote vil­lage in the north, trau­ma­tised fam­i­lies said yes­ter­day af­ter be­ing re­leased by the in­sur­gents.

The mil­i­tants killed about 50 vil­lagers, in­clud­ing women and chil­dren in Mirza­walang — a shia vil­lage in Sayad dis­trict of north­ern Sar-e Pul prov­ince — on Satur­day af­ter over­run­ning a gov­ern­ment-backed mili­tia.

The in­sur­gents also took res­i­dents cap­tive, but re­leased 235 hostages on Tues­day af­ter el­ders and pro­vin­cial of­fi­cials struck a deal with the group.

Sur­vivors de­scribed night­mar­ish scenes, de­tail­ing how the mil­i­tants went from house to house, shoot­ing vil­lagers.

“When the fight­ing be­gan, the vil­lagers tried to flee, but they were stopped by IS fighters. They took a group of men, women and chil­dren be­hind a hill and shot them,” said Ali Dad Za­fari.

“Since my mother was too old to walk, she was left be­hind, I don’t even know what has hap­pened to her,” he added.

Vil­lager Yasin Abuzar said IS and Tal­iban fighters cut off the main roads to the area be­fore launch­ing a killing spree.

“I could only res­cue my kids. When they en­tered our vil­lage they opened fire at ev­ery­one in­dis­crim­i­nately, they didn’t even spare women and chil­dren.” AFP

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