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Sun, Aug

An Afghan soldier has defused more than 5,000 landmines

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anp-deminerAn Afghan soldier claims he has defused more than 5,000 landmines over the past five years but no government official has ever commended his job.

Ziaul Haq, the deputy head of a mine-defusing team of the Afghan National Army, told Pajhwok Afghan News on Sunday he had defused landmines planted on roads and in agriculture fields during military and search operations.

He said there was no operation in which he had not participated. “Despite the fact I have saved lives of thousands of civilians, government officials and soldiers, officials have never acknowledged my efforts,” Haq said with resentment.

A minor mistake in defusing a landmine could lead to death; the job needs professional skills and consistent attention. Haq claimed items used in making landmines were brought from Pakistan.

Besides the danger his job poses, he feels insecure after receiving threats on the phone from unknown people. Because of the threats, he said, his family had been in tension.

Maj. Gen. Nabi Jan Mullakhel, the provincial police chief, confirmed Haq’s participation in military operations and called him a dedicated worker. He also appreciated Haq for saving the lives of civilians and soldiers.

Mullahkhel said the Interior Ministry had its own exclusive strategy for defusing landmines but the police headquarters would appreciate personnel like Haq. He appreciated efforts of all policemen.