Now joining the fight against coronavirus: The world’s armed rebels, drug cartels and gangs
It is hardly the first time such groups have attempted to fill the role of government. But few crises in modern times have tested the limits of the world’s nation-states as the coronavirus has, providing an opening for armed groups to step in where presidents, police forces and parliaments have failed.
Some groups have attempted to weave governments’ failures to control the virus into their own propaganda narratives. In Somalia, al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab fighters say the pandemic was spread “by the crusader forces who have invaded the country.” The Islamic State has told followers to prepare to exploit their enemies while they are overwhelmed by outbreaks. In Yemen, Houthi rebels have accused Saudi Arabia of airdropping masks infected with covid-19.
In eastern Afghanistan, where the Afghan government and the Taliban have clashed for nearly two decades, the rivalry over which group has a more effective health policy is now on full display.
Esmatullah Asim, a provincial council member from Wardak province, watched the arrival of Taliban forces in medical gear …continued .
[Source: Washington Post]