40 security force members killed in fighting

KABUL (Tolo News): Over 40 Afghan security force members have been killed in fighting with the Taliban over the past 24 hours, with the majority of casualties reported in volatile areas in Kunduz, Baghlan and Nimroz province.

Meanwhile, the Afghan Ministry of Defense (MoD) said that the Afghan security forces have made major advances against the Taliban in Kunduz province and have dealt a major human toll to the group. Over 40 Taliban have been killed in recent clashes in Kunduz, according to the MoD.

The Dash-e-Arshi and Imam Sahib districts in Kunduz and some areas in the suburbs of Kunduz city have seen fierce fighting in the past two days. In Baghlan province, the Baghlan-e-Markazi district and suburbs of the provincial capital Pul-e-Khumri have seen a fresh spate of violence between the Afghan security forces and the Taliban.

In the southern province of Kandahar, Panjwai and Arghandab have witnessed recent battles between the Afghan security forces and the Taliban. Khashrud district in Nimroz province also witnessed deadly fighting. “There is no government rule there,” said Ajmal, a resident in Baghlan.

“There is no good leadership, there is only brutality and oppression,” said Juma Khan, a resident in Baghlan. On Monday alone, over 10 security force members were killed in Baghlan during the battles. “It’s now two or three nights that ten or twelve of our soldiers are killed or become hostages,” said Safdar Mohseni, the head of Baghlan’s provincial council.

“The opponents have a clear address in Baghlan, if they increased their activities, there is fear that the highway to the north will be closed,” said MP Atiq Ramin. Meanwhile, in Kunduz, the local administration has said that over 20 security force members have been killed in battles with the Taliban in Dasht-e-Archi district and other areas of the province in the past 24 hours.

“There is war every moment,” said Mohammad Daud, a resident in Imam Sahib district. “The situation has become worse, Imam Sahib will fall if action not taken,” said Gulbuddin, a resident in Imam Sahib. “The Afghan Security and Defense Forces have dealt a major blow to the Taliban, their key commanders have been eliminated,” said Fawad Aman, a deputy spokesman at the Ministry of Defense.

“The enemy launched some attacks on Kandahar city and some district of Kandahar, they wanted to take over these areas,” said Farid Mashal, the head of the security department of the Kandahar police department. Typically fighting decreases in the the winter, but this year several provinces of the country have seen continued fighting, and analysts say it is related to the peace talks in Doha.