Taliban militants capture district in NE Afghanistan

Taliban militants capture district in NE Afghanistan
08:42 21 İyun 2015
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Taliban militants have captured a district in Afghanistan's northeastern province of Kunduz amid reports that the militants are pushing closer towards the center of the province, Press TV reported.

The militants took control of the Chardara district on Saturday evening following long exchange of fire with Afghan security forces.

"The gun battle between militants and security forces continued for hours during the day," district governor Zulmai Farooqi said.

He also added that both the Taliban militants and the security forces suffered casualties during the fighting, but the exact number has not been determined so far.

Also on Saturday, at least 14 people were killed and five others wounded when their vehicle hit a roadside bomb in the southwestern Afghan province of Helmand, said Omar Zwak, the provincial governor's spokesman.

No individual or group has claimed responsibility for the deadly incident. However, the attack bears the hallmarks of Taliban militants, who frequently use roadside bombings to target Afghan security forces and their vehicles.

The militants launched their spring offensive in late April, during which they intensify their terrorist attacks against the government as well as civilian targets.

The United States and its allies invaded Afghanistan in 2001 as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. The military offensive removed the Taliban from power, but insecurity continues across the country despite the presence of thousands of US-led troops.

The US-led combat mission in Afghanistan ended on December 31, 2014. However, at least 13,500 foreign forces, mainly from the United States, have remained in Afghanistan in what the US is calling a support mission.

The US-led NATO says the forces would focus mainly on counterterrorism and training Afghan soldiers and policemen.

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