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Kabul faces blackout amid attempts to fix power lines

The Afghan capital of Kabul has been witnessing about six hours of blackout a day over the destruction of an electricity pylon in the northern part of the war-ravaged country.

Officials said on Monday threats from militants and harsh weather have thwarted their efforts to repair power lines to alleviate the woes of people in the capital.

The power cuts came after an electricity pylon in the Dand Shahabuddin district of the northern Baghlan Province was destroyed in a militant attack last week. The pylon transferred power from Uzbekistan and met nearly half of Kabul’s daily requirement.

According to Mirwais Alami, chief commercial officer at Afghanistan’s national power company, mines planted in the area and the danger posed by the militants have prevented repair crews from approaching the power lines.

This is while residents said more pylons have been destroyed in the area.

“Enemy forces have brought machine saws and have been cutting down electricity pylons,” Alami said.

The weather situation has also been blamed for the delay in the repair operations with Abdul Satar Barez, the provincial governor of Baghlan, saying operations to secure the area so as to enable repair crews to work on the pylons have been suspended over to fog and bad weather.

“Taliban are still in the area, they are a threat and danger and we cannot launch our operation now. We are waiting for the weather to get better,” he said.

The Taliban has, however, denied responsibility for the destruction of the power lines, which has hit businesses and industry.

Afghanistan has been the scene of violence since 2001 when the US and its allies invaded the country as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror, which also saw the removal of the Taliban from power.

Daesh terrorists, mainly operating in Iraq and Syria, have also been reportedly recruiting militants in Afghanistan over the past months in what is believed to be aimed at establishing sanctuaries in areas traditionally seen as the strongholds of Taliban militants.

The file photo purportedly shows a group of men being trained at a Daesh terror camp in an unknown location in Afghanistan.

US and Afghan officials said on Tuesday that a radio station operated by the Takfiri terrorists has been destroyed in air raids in a district in the eastern province of Nangarhar late Monday.

The radio station was broadcasting illegally across the province as the terror group had been trying to boost recruitment and spread its message.

The spokesman for the Nangarhar governor, Attaullah Khogyani, also said more than 20 members of Daesh were also killed in the US airstrikes, including five who were working for the radio station.


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