81 rebels, 7 security men dead in Helmand clashes
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): As many as 81 insurgents were eliminated and their 35 hideouts destroyed during a clearing operation in southern Helmand province, an official said on Wednesday.
At least seven security personnel were lost to clashes with insurgents during the offensive focused on Garamsir and Khanshin districts, border police chief Brig. Gen. Sultan Mahmood Mahmood told Pajhwok Afghan News.
He said a large number of militant hideouts were destroyed and huge amounts of weapons, ammunitions and motorcycles seized during the week-long offensive.
Omar Omari, administrative chief of Garamsir district, said the operation involving Afghan National Army (ANA), police and border police personnel had just concluded in the town.
He confirmed two border policemen, one Afghan Local Police (ALP) and four ANA officials were killed during direct engagements with the rebels.
Nabi Jan, a resident of Khanashin district, said heavy fighting had been taking place between insurgents and security forces in their area over the past few days.
He said the security situation had considerably improved in the wake of the operation. He said there were no reports about civilians casualties in the operation.
But a Taliban spokesman Qari Yusuf Ahmadi claimed 29 security personnel had been killed during the engagements in Khanashin and Garamsir districts. He said four insurgents had also died.
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