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27 killed in rebel attacks in Uruzgan, Baghlan

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KABUL: At least 27 Afghan security forces were killed in fierce overnight fighting between Afghan forces and Taliban militants who attacked multiple checkpoints in the insurgent stronghold of Uruzgan and also Baghlan province, officials said Wednesday.

Taliban militants attacked checkpoints in Dehrado district surrounding the city of Trinkot city on Tuesday night, which Afghan forces countered with heavy assaults, said Uruzgan Governor’s spokesman, Ahmadshah Sahil. He added that five security forces were killed in the clashes which left two others wounded.

Unconfirmed reports say casualties in Dehrado clashes exceeded 13 which included the district deputy police chief. Reports suggested that the Taliban overran the district.

But governor’s spokesman denied them, saying Afghan security forces were present in the district center. He said at least 17 Taliban insurgents including their commander were killed and six others wounded in the counterassaults that ensued.

Dehrado had once fallen to the Taliban. But, the defense ministry said the militants had been pushed back and that the district was under the government’s control.

The local officials said that the Taliban damaged public installations after the district collapsed. A video on social media, however, showed the Taliban destroying provincial higher educational center. The insurgents come up with the same stand, denying the reports and promised to recognize and hold the perpetrators accountable.

In another Taliban attack in Baghlan province, at least 14 security forces were killed on Tuesday night. A government official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the militants staged an overnight coordinated attack on a security checkpoint in Dand-i-Ghor area of Pul-i-Khumri city on Tuesday night. He said 10 policemen and four uprising forces were killed in the overnight attack.

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