The “Khost Protection Force” (KPF), the CIA-trained paramilitary faction in Afghanistan’s Khost Province, is coming under growing criticism from locals as well as the Afghan central government for being unaccountable, and causing a growing civilian death toll.
Afghan officials say that the KPF conducted a series of home raids under the guise of counterterrorism operations against the homes of totally innocent civilians, and killed at least six of them. Two US “advisers,” apparently CIA, were present during the raids.
The CIA has come under fire for using the KPF as a virtual proxy force, ordering them around the province on arbitrary arrest missions, detaining people without charges (despite not being a police force in and of themselves), and torturing them.
This is basically par for the course for US-backed factions within Afghanistan, but the KPF is a much larger, more concentrated force, and has gotten away with operating this way for years because the Khost Province has such a heavy Taliban presence. Increasingly, however, even the Afghan government sees the group’s operations as fueling unrest among tribal leaders more than doing any real harm to the Taliban.
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