28 security men injured as Lashkargah clash continues
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): At least 28 security personnel have been so far wounded during an ongoing clash with Taliban insurgents in the capital of southern Helmand province, an official said on Saturday.
The fighting erupted between the two sides on Friday night in Bolan area on the outskirts of Laskhargah city.
A resident of Bolan area, Rozi Mohammad, told Pajhwok Afghan News the insurgents emerged on the streets and opened fire at security personnel on Friday night. He said the fighting forced many inhabitants into leaving homes.
Another resident of the district, Shahzadah, said the insurgents had entered people’s homes and used them as bastions in Chah-i-Injir locality.
“Almost all families in the area have been displaced and shops are closed. Only those families who were unable to flee homes remain in the area.”
An official of the Afghan Border Police (ABP) at the conflict scene, Esmatullah, said many groups of the Taliban had arrived at the area over the past 24 hours.
He said the two warring sides were just just 300 metres away from each other. He said the insurgents would be pushed back of reinforcements arrived.
Asadulah, another ABP official said, heavy casualties were inflicted on the insurgents during the hours long clash.
Helmand governor’s spokesman Omar Zwak said the insurgents had reached near Lashkargah and wanted to attack security posts, but security forces blocked their advance. He said soon a massive operation would be launched by security forces in Bolan area.
At least 28 insurgents and 12 security personnel suffered casualties in the clash, Zwak said, without specifying the number of those wounded and dead.
On the other hand, officials at the Emergency-run hospital said 28 wounded security personnel had been delivered to the hospital so far. The wounded included Afghan National Army (ANA) and police personnel.
The Taliban confirmed the clash, with their spokesman, Qari Yousuf Ahmadi claiming the fighters had closed roads from Nad Ali, Marja and Chah-i-Injir leading to Bolan area. He said the fighting was ongoing and security forces had sustained many casualties.
Helmand is one of the most insecure provinces of Afghanistan. Currently four of its districts are under Taliban control and in some other districts, security forces control only district centres.
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