Afghanistan Freedom Front (AFF), a major armed group fighting the Taliban, has confirmed that the Front’s six fighters, including a senior commander named Basir Andarabi, were killed in the fight against the Taliban. But it did not confirm the death of another senior commander, Akmal Ameer, saying his fate remained unknown.
This comes after the Taliban’s defence ministry confirmed on Tuesday that its forces had killed seven “rebels” including their commander, Akmal Ameer, during an operation in Salang district of Parwan province.
Other sources had also confirmed to KabulNow on Tuesday that Ameer and his seven fellow fighters were killed in a Taliban ambush on Monday when they were attempting to retreat from Parwan’s Salang region to Shutal district of the adjacent Panjshir province.
It was followed by widespread media coverage and condolences from former government officials and the leader of another known anti-Taliban front, the National Resistance Front (NRF), Ahmad Masoud.
Late on Tuesday, the AFF issued a statement in which it identified its fallen fighters as Basir Andarabi, Fahim Salangi, Burhan Andarabi, Qurban Ali Bamyani, Saboor Faryabi, and Hussain Samangani. They were killed in the fight against the Taliban in the southern Salang region over the past two days, the Front added.
“A large number of the fighters have arrived in secure areas but there is no authentic information about the fate of some others, including Akmal Ameer,” the statement said, describing some footage attributed to its fallen fighters circulating on social media as false and forged.
Moreover, the AFF claimed that over 30 Taliban fighters were also killed in heavy battles against its forces in the highlands of the southern Salang region over the past three days.
Most of the identified fallen AFF fighters are former heavily trained commandos from different provinces which resonates with the Front’s claim that it has presence and active members in all 34 provinces of Afghanistan.
Basir Andarabi and Akmal Ameer had served as senior commanders for the elite Afghan commando forces during the previous government.
The Taliban recaptured Afghanistan in August 2021. Since then, at least three major militias have so far been formed and conducted some deadly attacks against the Taliban forces in various parts of the country. In addition to the AFF and NRF, another militia proclaimed itself as the Jabhe Milli Azadagan – literally means the national front of the liberators – has also claimed some attacks against the Taliban.
Sharing his condolences, the NRF Leader Ahmand Masoud said that the loss of the two senior commanders highlighted the need for creating a coordinated and unified commanding centre for all the anti-Taliban forces.
“I hope that the ongoing efforts will soon lead us to mobilize all anti-Taliban forces under a large umbrella,” Masoud added, indicating an already started attempt to create a unified coordination centre for the anti-Taliban armed groups