MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): Residents of the capital of northern Balkh province say the level of robberies and kidnappings in the city has dropped.
Sifatullah, owner of a grocery store in Mazar-i-Sharif, told Pajhwok Afghan News he had not heard of robberies and kidnappings in the past one and half month.
Security checkpoints remained active and alert in many parts of the city, he acknowledged, believing the crime rate had fallen due to the presence of security posts.
Zarmina, another resident of Mazar-i-Sharif, also confirmed an improvement in the security situation and a decline in the crime rate.
She told Pajhwok in the past, she could not carry her cell phone from home to the bazaar for fear of being snatched. But now the problem has been resolved and she no longer has security concerns.
Zarmina added illegal activities had also decreased after the security forces busted several gangs of kidnappers and robbers in the city.
Balkh police, meanwhile, claimed arresting dozens of individuals in recent weeks on various charges.
Dr Ghulam Rasool Malakzai, a social activist in Balkh, also said the security situation in Mazar-i-Sharif had improved in recent weeks. He said the citizens could move freely day and night.
Malakzai believed the security forces in the province needed to enhance coordination and step up activities to further curb the crime rate.
Provincial police chief Maulvi Abdul Hai Abid said more than 40 suspected criminals had been arrested in Mazar-i-Sharif over the past three weeks.
He added operations against criminals were underway and that they would not allow civilians getting into trouble.
According him, the crime rate has come down to almost zero. He promised reducing the crime rate to zero in the coming days and weeks.