Afghan Taliban defectors reverting back to insurgency over failed Govt promises: Report

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London, Apr.23 (ANI): Numerous low-ranking and second string Taliban commanders who had shunned the insurgency in Afghanistan, have now rejoined the violent extremists, with the government failing to keep its promise over the incentives it had offered to them, a report has revealed.

A research by a Kabul based think tank, Afghanistan Analysts Network, also warned that NATO's plans to spend more than one billion dollars to lure the Taliban soldiers could backfire, as it can result in massive corruption in the government and could also greatly enhance the number of insurgents.

The report titled the 'Golden Surrender' was critical of the British-backed Peace and Reconciliation Scheme (PTS), which was started in 2005, saying the scheme is struggling to keep up with the promises due to the lack leadership and funds.

According to NATO, there are over 36,000 Taliban soldiers fighting against the foreign forces in Afghanistan, mostly in the southern part of the country, and the report said the PTS scheme has been able to convince less than two percent of the insurgents, including 33 militant commanders to shun the violent means.

"Several of these have reportedly rejoined the insurgency, including a number of low to mid-level commanders who are currently active in Helmand...Uruzgan and Kandahar," The Times Online quoted the report, as saying.

The report also mentioned names of several Taliban commanders such as Mullah Mirza, Azizullah, who have joined their former mates against allied forces in Marjah where the US, British and the Afghan troops had jointly launched operation Moshtarak earlier this year.

"Most of these commanders were inactive for six to 18 months, waiting for the PTS to deliver on its promises. Once it became apparent that no support would be forthcoming they simply rejoined the fight," the report said.

Though the think tank's report could not be verified particularly because the insurgents change their names frequently and none of the Taliban commander mentioned in the report were well-known, but an Afghan official also agreed that extremists have reverted back to the insurgency.

"During my tenure as governor, two or three times the Taleban came through PTS and then went back to the Government," the newspaper quoted former governor of Uruzgan province, Engineer Assadullah Hamdam, as saying. (ANI)

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