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    Commander among 3 fighters killed in Helmand

    LASHKARGAH (PAN): A local Taliban commander was among three fighters killed while another was injured in the restive province of Helmand, officials said on Friday.

    A group of about six fighters attacked police while they were defusing a mine underneath a bridge in the Nahr-i-Siraj district, provincial police chief, Brig. Gen. Muhammad Hakim Angar, told Pajhwok Afghan News.

    One policeman was injured, but three fighters including their local commander, Muhammad Ewaz, were killed and another fighter was injured in retaliatory gunfire, he said.

    The fighters took the bodies of their colleagues, but left behind the body of the commander, he added.

    Taliban spokesman, Qari Yousuf Ahmadi, confirmed the militants suffered casualties but said six policemen were also killed during the clash.

    Separately, three civilians were killed Thursday evening when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb in Baba Jee area on outskirts of provincial capital, Lashkarghah, Angar, said. A resident of the area, Khan Agha, said two people were killed and a third injured when their motorcycle hit the mine.

    Meanwhile, three more Taliban fighters were killed when the bomb they were planting exploded, Angar said.

    myn/cas