The Taliban gunned down a 10-year-old “war hero” on Monday. Wasil Ahmad, who had been cheered and hailed as a “war hero” by Afghan government for leading an attack against Taliban last year was killed by the terror group.
The Taliban declared that they assassinated him by shooting twice on his head on Monday. According to The New York Times Wasil was gunned down by a man in motorcycle as he was on his way to buy vegetables in Tirin Kot City. Reportedly, he left militia life a few months back and joined a school as a fourth grader.
The “war hero,” Wasil is another example of child combatants in Afghanistan who have become part of either the government forces or the Taliban insurgents, stated the report.
Rafiullah Baidar, a spokesperson for Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) said that Wasil was not a threat to the Taliban. He added, “If they had targeted him in a military base, then they could have raised the question of what was a child doing in a military base. But he was targeted in front of his home,”
His Uncle Mullah Abdul Samad was previously a Taliban commander, but switched sides and became a Government Commander of 70 Afghan Local Police Militia Men. When Samad was wounded, Wasil took over the command. Mr. Samad commented on Wasil’s heroic triumph, “He fought like a miracle…He was successfully leading my men on my behalf for 44 days until I recovered.”
The inhuman recruitment of children in militia has become a trend in Afghanistan. According to human rights and provincial officials, children are not only recruited in police and military forces but also by other militias as the Taliban. They are also sexually abused by them. currently, more than 200 boys, under 18 years of age, are serving in Afghan National Police (ANP).
Abdul Qader Noorzai, head of AIHRC, commented, “Children are used for different purposes. The majority of them experience sexual abuse; others do all kinds of jobs such as cooking, cleaning, day patrols and even fighting.”
Meanwhile, a senior government official informed, “The auxiliary police and private security contractors widely use child soldiers while the government and the AIHRC do not have the capacity to monitor, investigate and stop them.”