Security personnel among 64 dead in Helmand fighting
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): Four security personnel and 60 Taliban fighters have been killed during an ongoing military offensive in the Sangin district of southern Helmand province, officials said on Thursday.
NATO and Afghan security personnel launched the operation in the district on Wednesday, Gen. Abdul Wadood Najrabi, spokesman for the 215th Maiwand Corps 2nd brigade, told Pajhwok Afghan News.
He said scores of Taliban had been killed, 40 others wounded. The bodies of 40 dead fighter were still lying on the battlefield Najrabi added. Threats of more attacks had subsided and the insurgents had been ousted from key areas of the districts, he claimed.
The military spokesman said the Taliban had gone into hiding in remote places and there was a lull in fighting at the moment, but warplanes continued to conduct reconnaissance missions over the district.
Earlier, top security officials had rejected claims that the Taliban captured the district centre. Some media outlets reported that the militants had overrun the Sangin district centre after hours of clashes with the security personnel.
Police spokesman 2nd Lt. Shah Mohammad Ashna told Pajhwok Afghan News security forces were trying to strengthen their positions. They had secured the district, he added.
Omar Zwak, the governor’s spokesman, claimed heavy causalities had been inflicted on the Taliban in Sangin, where security forces were making steady progress.
But Taliban spokesman Qari Yousuf Ahmadi rejected the official assertion that the insurgents had suffered causalities in the Sangin fighting. He said the district was still under Taliban’s control.
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