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Taliban kill at least 10 police in Afghanistan clashes – officials

07 Oct 2018 TRT World

Officials say the fighters set fire to a government building in central Wardak district and killed the district police chief along with nine other policemen on Saturday night.

At least 10 policemen were killed

in clashes with Taliban fighters in the central Afghan province

of Wardak, officials said on Sunday, amid fighting to wrest

control of arterial highways a day after Taliban fighters blew

up bridges.

The Taliban set fire to a government building in Wardak's

Sayeed Abad district and killed the district police chief along

with nine other policemen on Saturday night, a senior police

official said.

Repeated assaults by insurgents on strategically important

provinces, such as Wardak and nearby Ghazni have underscored how

volatile security remains in Afghanistan two weeks before

nationwide parliamentary elections.

At least 25 Taliban insurgents were killed by Afghan

security forces, government officials said, and reinforcements

from neighbouring provinces were deployed to regain control of

contested highways.

'... a lot of causalities'

"The government forces especially police suffered a lot of causalities in the fighting. We arrived here to help them but the district was already captured by the insurgents. The government is not supporting army and police so how we should serve this government?" an unnamed Afghan commando soldier said.

Officials said Afghan forces had driven out Taliban

insurgents from the highway that connects Afghanistan's capital,

Kabul, to the major southern city of Kandahar.

Abdul Rahman Mangal, a spokesman for the Wardak governor's

office, said the Taliban raided some civilian houses after

killing 10 policemen in that province, destroyed newly built

checkpoints and cut power to some parts of the city.

Government forces counter-attacked to stop the insurgents

from approaching the city, Mangal said.

Major power lines cut

Afghanistan’s power supply company, Da Afghanistan Breshna

Sherkat, said in a statement major power lines serving Wardak

and Ghazni had been cut. The power cuts also affected parts of

the nearby provinces of Logar and Paktia.

It said teams would be sent to repair the lines as soon as

security improves.

A statement from the Taliban's main spokesman, Zabihullah

Mujahid, said the insurgents had taken the centre of Sayeed Abad

in Wardak and all surrounding security checkpoints, killing

numerous members of the security forces and seizing weapons,

ammunition and vehicles.

Mohammad Arif Noori, a spokesman for Ghazni's governor, said

one soldier was killed by Taliban fighters as they tried to gain

control over parts of the province nearly two months after being

pushed back from the city by US-backed Afghan forces.

Attacks near Kabul

The Taliban attacked Ghazni, a strategically important

centre straddling the main highway linking Kabul with

Afghanistan's south, in August. 

It was the largest tactical

operation launched by the Taliban since they overran the

northern city of Kunduz in 2015.

That confrontation killed 150 members of Afghanistan's security forces and 95 civilians, as well as hundreds of Taliban fighters.

Source: Reuters

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