Pajhwok Afghan News

Joblessness forcing Kunduz youth into joining rebels

KUNDUZ CITY (Pajhwok): Joblessness, poverty and government’s inattention has left the youth in northeastern Kunduz province with no option but to join the militancy, officials said on Saturday.

Abdul Ghafor Hottak, youth affairs director at the Information and Culture Department, said hundreds of educated youth despite efforts had been unable to get jobs in government offices because they had no connections there.

“A majority of these young men with bachelor’s degrees from the Kunduz University have joined Taliban militants,” he said, adding three of the youth joining rebels were now commanders.

Hottak continued the three commanders were currently operating in Dasht-i-Archi district, expressing his concern that more youth could join militancy if the government paid no attention to creating job opportunities.

However, provincial Labour and Social Affairs Director, Mohammad Zahir Azimi, said he was unaware if the jobless youth had joined the Taliban. He said the government was working to provide jobs to people.

“There is no doubt that the graph of joblessness has increased, but the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs is trying to provide jobs to people, particularly to the educated ones,” he said.

Zarghon Mulzim, editor in chief of Kunduz Gazette and a civil society activist, said the youth were asset of a country, who could lead a state in future, but the Afghan government had ignored them.

“In the current sensitive situation, the government should have effective plans for preventing the youth from migrating to foreign countries by resolving the joblessness problem,” he said.

Wahidullah Rahmani, a resident of Kunduz City, the provincial capital, said the ongoing conflict would continue until people were provided with job opportunities.

He said several Afghan youth after higher education could not find jobs and had joined the Taliban militants in rural areas.

Rahmani, who got a government job after suffering from several problems, said joblessness forced people into joining militants. He asked the government to help people and provide them with jobs and prevent them from swelling militant ranks.

mds/ma

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