Taliban again close Gardez-Patan highway in Paktia
GARDEZ (Pajhwok): Residents of southeastern Paktia province on Wednesday said the Taliban had once again closed the Gardez-Patan highway against traffic.
The Taliban militants had previously closed the same highway about two weeks ago before the road was reopened as a result of a security operation against the rebls.
A driver on the route, Syed Noor, told Pajhwok Afghan News the Taliban had closed the road in Andom area against all kinds of movement.
He said the road was closed on Wednesday noon, leaving stranded a large number of passengers on both sides of the blockade.
A security official said clashes between security forces and insurgents were ongoing since yesterday in Chamkani, Janikhel and Mirzaka districts.
He said the insurgents had sustained heavy casualties in the clashes and only three security men had been killed or wounded so far.
The governor’s spokesman, Naqib Ahmad Atal, said the insurgents had descended on the highway in some areas for searches, but the road had not been completely shut.
He said security forces had reached vulnerable areas to do away with threat posed by the insurgents and to ensure fearless movement on the road.
The Taliban have said nothing in this regard.
The Gardez-Patan road interconnects Dand Patan, Chamkani, Janikhel, Zazi Aryub, Ahmadkhel, Lazha Mangal and Mirzaki districts.
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