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Editorial: Regional forces and security

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The ministry of defense announced recently that it was working on the formation of a new force with the aim of maintaining the remote areas that have been taken from Taliban and other insurgent groups.

Dawlat Waziri, spokesman for the ministry called the new force as “regional troops”. He said that the plan had been already approved by President Ashraf Ghani. He added that the former soldiers and non-commissioned officers that had been dismissed due to different reasons would be recruited. The new forces according to ministry of defense, would be 36,000-strong troops that would be made in three processes.

The ministry says that the new troops would be deployed in the areas where army and police did not have posts after taking them from the militant groups.

The new ‘regional troops’ is in fact similar to the local police force that was built in 2010 with the financial assistance of the US government. The local police that people had hopes could help ensure security in the remote areas, did not perform well. Scores of complaints were referred to the local police who were made mostly from irresponsible armed groups. People blamed these forces for robberies, kidnappings, rapes and murders for money.

The local police were also accused of cooperating with the anti-government armed groups. Handing over their outposts to Taliban fighters, selling arms to them and defecting to the group’s fighters after killing their colleagues and taking their weapons were accusations these forces face with.

At present that our country needs more troops because of the continued war, this is a good move to empowering security force especially that the NATO-led international soldiers are not in the war fronts.

The formation of the regional force is expected to be another arm for the security and defense forces. But this should not be neglected that quality is better than quantity, and military authorities and experts have to be very careful in the formation and particularly in recruitment of personnel.

Educated people should be recruited and they need to pass trainings so that they be familiar with basics of military service, loyalty to the homeland and good behavior with the people.

Public support of security forces will be secured when they are sure that the troops are really serving for their security and are honest to the private and public properties. They will respect soldiers and police officers when these troops respect them.

Let’s hope that the new regional troops be honest soldiers to their soil.