Members of the Afghan Air Force are facing a new dangers, as the Taliban threaten to kidnap and murder pilots’ family members. ‘Night letters‘ have been used regularly by militant groups in Afghanistan to sow fear and mistrust. These letters appear overnight, tacked to a door and containing a message targeting an individual, family or community that is perceived to have helped occupying forces.
From Reuters –
As U.S. debates policy, Afghan pilots fear for families’ lives
Like other colleagues flying A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft, he told Reuters he has received death threats. One came in the form a note left on the door of his home in Kabul.
“It said: ‘If you don’t quit, we’re going to kidnap your kids and kill you’,” the pilot said in an interview, asking not to be identified due to fears for his security.
His children are aged 2, 3, 6 and 7. Three other pilots said such threats were common among Super Tucano pilots, whose skills are quickly becoming among the most sought after assets in the Afghan arsenal. Two said they wanted the Afghan government to do more to help protect their families.
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