A dozen deminers killed in Helmand assault
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): A dozen deminers were killed and several others wounded in the Washer district of southern Helmand province on Saturday, officials said.
Police spokesman Col. Farid Ahmad told Pajhwok Afghan News the Taliban attack, but gave no information about the casualties. He said the incident was being investigated.
The victims are said to be employees of the Sterling Demining Afghanistan (SDA), according to the spokesman, who put the toll at 12 dead and six wounded.
Gen. Ghulam Farooq Parwani, deputy commander of the 215th Maiwand Corps, said some of the attackers were killed in a subsequent air and ground offensive. Three of them have been detained.
“Workers of the NGO, working within the United Nations framework, came under attack from a group of militants. We killed a number of attackers in subsequent air raids. The bodies of four militants are in our custody,” he added.
The insurgent attack happened around noon in Shorab area, where the workers were busy in a mine-clearing operation, said one security official, who requested not to be named.
He added 12 deminers were killed and as many wounded in the assault. The source feared the death toll could soar, given that some of the injured were in critical condition.
An official of the demining firm also verified the attack. Speaking on condition of anonymity, he said the victims were his colleagues, who were attacked by the Taliban on motorbikes.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.
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