Almar fighting claims over a dozen lives
MAIMANA (PAN): More than a dozen people have been killed in two days of fighting in the Almar district of western Faryab province, an Afghan army officer said on Friday.
Seven fighters, three tribal elders and as may Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers were killed during the clashes in Qaragholi village. Eighty rebels stormed the area.
Mohammad Raza Raza, the 209th ANA Military Corps spokesman, told Pajhwok Afghan News the insurgents were trying to foment trouble in Almar and Qaisar districts, as well as the provincial capital Maimana.
In compliance with the governor’s orders, the troops launched an operation to clear the area late on Thursday. In the offensive that concluded Friday morning, the soldiers killed seven Taliban, including four commanders.
Raza identified the slain militant leaders as Mullah Abdullah, Commander Madad, Mullah Arif Charik and Ziauddin. The Taliban killed three elders who opposed a militant presence in the area.
But a local official, who did not want to be named, put the civilian death toll at eight, including three women. A fourth woman and a child were wounded in the clashes, he claimed.
Four soldiers were also killed and 30 others wounded, according to the source, who said two ANA tanks were torched. “Ten houses were also burnt. When the Taliban fled on motorbikes, ANA soldiers brought out motorcycles from civilian houses and set them alight.”
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