WASHINGTON - Islamic State militants decapitated three brothers in Chaparhar district, its traditional stronghold in eastern Nangarhar province, officials told VOA.
“Nisar, Naeem and Abul Wahab, all working in the medical profession, did not have any links to the Afghan government,” Attullah Khogyani Nangarhar, provincial government spokesperson, told VOA. “They were all taken out from their residence in Chaprahar district and were slain brutally,” he said.
IS militants operate in different parts of eastern Nangarhar province where they target local residents and Afghan security forces, officials claim.
Father killed earlier
Hazrat Hussain Mashiqiwal, Nangarhar province police chief, said, “Militants killed the father of the three brothers last year, but no group claimed responsibility for the killing. We are investigating the killing of the three brothers.”
Local residents claim the brothers were killed in public.
“They (IS militants) warned us to not touch the bodies," Taaj Mohammad, a local resident of Chaprahar district, told VOA. Chaprahar district is located 20 kilometers south of Jalalabad, the capital city of eastern Nangarhar province.
Doctors plan strike
Medical professionals in eastern Nangarhar province claim to have been threatened, kidnapped and even killed by various criminal groups.
“We condemn the killing of the medical profession members. It is a barbarous act,” Gulam Sakhi Rahmanzai, director of Doctors’ Union in eastern Nangarhar province, told VOA.
On Sunday, several people associated with the medical profession said they would go on strike in eight days unless the government improves their security.
According to the Nangarhar Medical Sector, during the past six months, two doctors were killed, five more were wounded, and seven doctors were released after they paid ransom.
“National security forces have arrested six suspected kidnappers, including two Taliban insurgents. Two of the suspects have confessed to having links with (the) Islamic State terror group,” said Khogyani.
Artillery attack claims 17
IS’s self-styled Khorasan province branch (IS-K) emerged in the mountainous areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan more than two years ago and has wreaked havoc in several Afghan provinces, including eastern Nangarhar province.
But Afghan officials said they and their U.S. allies are fighting back. Monday, a U.S. artillery attack on the Deh Bala district of eastern Nangarhar province killed at least 17 IS militants.
Ziaurrahman Hasrat contributed to this report from Nangarhar, Afghanistan.