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‘Pakistani militia forces cutting Paktika pine nut forest’

‘Pakistani militia forces cutting Paktika pine nut forest’

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Apr 24, 2017 - 23:07

SHARANA (Pajhwok): Pakistani militia forces have started cutting down pine-nut forests in Barmal district of southeastern Paktika province, residents of the district said on Monday.

Waziri tribal council head in the district, Qudratullah, told Pajhwok Afghan News the Pakistani paramilitary forces had started cutting the trees in Khidar Mountain area.

“Earlier a huge military camp was established by the US and Afghan forces in Khidar area, but after they pulled out, the camp was left to the Pakistanis who are now stationed there.”

Qudratullah said the Pakistani militia forces had asked local residents to cut the trees on the hillside, but people refused. Later on, the Pakistanis themselves started cutting the trees, he claimed.

Mohammad Karim, who lives in Tandi Margha village, also made the same claim, saying pine nuts were the only income source of local inhabitants.

Another tribal elder of the district, Sayed Nawaz, said the Pakistani militia had created problems for local residents. “The government should respond and if it remains silent, then we will have to decide on our own.”

A security official in the district said they could not retaliate until they were ordered to do so and confirmed the Pakistani militia was cutting pine nut trees in the area.

Government officials in Paktika refused to comment on the issue in Barmal district where the Pakistani forces have recently constructed some military installations in Angoor Ada area.

sns/ma

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