18 insurgents killed in Jawzjan’s Qush Tepa district
SHIBERGHAN (Pajhwok): Afghan forces’ airstrikes killed at least 18 insurgents, including two Uzbek fighters, in Qush Tepa district of northern Jawzjan province, an official said on Tuesday.
Jawzjan police chief Brig. Gen. Rahmatullah Turkistani told Pajhwok Afghan News the ground forces backed by air support were able to drive Taliban militants who had besieged the district centre for the last few days.
He said the insurgents were also driven from Khanqa, Shir Bik and Gardan villages. At least 18 militants were killed and another seven were injured the airstrike that broke the Taliban’s siege, he said. The dead rebels included two Uzbek nationals.
Turkistani said the security forces which had been besieged by Taliban for few days had run out of food and ammunition. But they were later rescued and provided with enough food and ammunition, he added.
“Today the security situation in Qush Tepa is better compared to the past few days and currently security forces are busy consolidating their positions on the outskirts of the city and the district bazaar.”
The official said the airstrikes involved fighter jets and helicopter gunships and 50 commandos and soldiers were also patrolling around the district searching for insurgents.
However, Taliban’s spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid denied the fighters had suffered casualties in yesterday’s and today’s clashes but confirmed injuries to three insurgents.
He said areas targeted by helicopter gunships were far away from their hideouts and they were still in control of the district centre and the clash had intensified.
Mujahid also called as baseless the assertion that they were being guided by Pakistani generals and said the killing of two Uzbek nationals were also untrue.
Elsewhere, a Taliban insurgent was killed and four others wounded in northwestern Farah province, an official said.
The rebels suffered casualties as a result of an airstrike in Khak-i-Safaid district, said Abdul Khaliq Noorzai, the district administrative chief.
He told Pajhwok Afghan News the airstrike was conducted in Diwar Sorkh locality, 10 kilometres from the district centre, on Monday afternoon.
He said four vehicles of the insurgents were also destroyed in the air raid.
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