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Iran Press TV

Afghan forces retake strategic southern district from Taliban

Iran Press TV

Aug 30, 2015 8:2AM

Afghan security forces have managed to take back control of a strategic district in the southern province of Helmand from the Taliban militants following days of fierce clashes.

Afghan Deputy Interior Minister General Ayub Salangi said in a message posted on his Twitter account that the Afghan soldiers now control Musa Qala, located about 165 kilometers (102 miles) north of the provincial capital, Lashkar Gah, during the early hours of Sunday.

Lieutenant Colonel Mohammad Rasoul Zazai, the spokesman for the Afghan military’s 215th Maiwand Corps, said at least 110 militants were killed and nearly 30 others injured during the overnight operation.

He added that Afghan military aircraft pounded several militant positions before ground forces mounted the offensive.

There were no immediate reports of casualties on the side of the Afghan government soldiers.

Local authorities confirmed on August 26 that Musa Qala had slipped into the hands of the Taliban militants following a week-long battle. More than two dozen Afghan security personnel were reportedly killed and about 40 others injured due to the clashes in the troubled region. According to reports, over 50 Afghan soldiers went missing during the Taliban attack.

Meanwhile, Afghan forces have killed more than 50 Taliban militants and arrested nearly two dozen others during various clean-up operations across the war-stricken country over the past 24 hours.

The Afghan Defense Ministry said in a statement on Sunday that 51 militants were killed and 22 others arrested in a series of operations carried out across the country.

The statement did not mention whether there were any casualties on the side of Afghan forces.

Afghanistan continues to face insecurity 14 years after the US and its allies invaded the country as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. Although the invasion removed Taliban from power, many areas in the country are still beset with insecurity.

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