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Taliban suffer heavy casualties in Kunduz: Officials

AT-KABUL: The Afghan National Security and Defense Forces (ANSDF) have inflicted heavy casualties on the Taliban after the militant group launched a series of attacks to take control of Qala-e-Zal and Dasht-e-Archi districts in restive Kunduz province, security officials said on Friday.

Afghan security forces are fighting the Taliban insurgents in Qala-e-Zal and Dasht-e-Archi districts of Kunduz province, the defense ministry’s spokesman, Gen. Dawlat Waziri, told Afghanistan Times.

He added that the security forces inflicted heavy causalities on the Taliban fighters during the attack. “Tens of them [Taliban] were killed and wounded,” he said, adding that the districts are under control of Afghan security forces. The spokesman said that three soldiers were killed in the fighting.

In a press statement, Ministry of Defense said that at least 30 insurgents were killed in the past 24 hours in Qala-e-Zal district of Kunduz province.

The Taliban insurgents expanded their fresh phase of the attacks, as last night they attacked Khwaja Ghar district of Takhar province, provincial official said.

“After Taliban insurgents captured Qarloq area in the Dasht-e-Archi district of Kunduz province, they also attacked Khwaja Ghar district of Takhar province,” the spokesman for Takhar governor, Sunatullah Temor, told Afghanistan Times.

“In their attack, the Taliban insurgents captured Gor Tapa area of Khwaja Ghar district. However, the Afghan security forces are ready to push back the Taliban and recapture the area,” he said. “Fighting is still continued in the area. High ranking provincial officials, including the governor, are already in the area to support Afghan security forces against the Taliban insurgents,” the spokesman said.

He said that Afghan security forces had received no causality in the fight against Taliban in the area.

The Taliban spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, claimed that 10 villages were captured in Gor Tapa area of Khwaja Ghar of Takhar province. “Dozens of gunmen were killed and wounded. Two others were made hostage, and military equipment were also seized,” Mujahid tweeted.

It is worth mentioning that Taliban insurgents launched a series of armed attacks to make a comeback in Kunduz province, as in April they attempted to overrun the province, but were pushed back by Afghan security forces. US airstrikes helped Afghan security forces in defeating Taliban fighters.

However, despite massive military operations, including night raids, Taliban are still controlling large swaths of the province.

Qala-e-Zal became the first district to fall to Taliban since they started their spring offensives in April throughout the country; though, the insurgent group had not made any significant gains in the battlefield.

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