Afghan forces wrest district from Taliban

Afghan government forces capture Helmand district from Taliban following fierce confrontations

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Afghan forces prepare to battle Taliban on the outskirts of Kunduz city in northern Afghanistan.

Updated Dec 19, 2015

Deputy Interior Minister Ayoub Salangi said on Friday that Afghan forces pushed Taliban militants out of the district centre in the southern Helmand province.

Afghan security forces took control of Helmand district, which was captured earlier this month by the Taliban.

"The district of Khanishin is cleared of enemies and Afghan forces inflicted heavy casualties," Salangi said.

Helmand district, which was a stronghold for the Taliban, witnessed intense confrontations between the group and the militants.

Last year, most of the international forces deployed in Afghanistan had withdrew. In 2001 the US, along with allies intervened in Afghanistan and toppled the Taliban's government.

In October, the group had captured the city of Kunduz, which came after two unsuccessful attempts, and was the Taliban's first and most important accomplishment since 2001. However, a few days later the city was under the government's control once again.  

Afghan police reported that security forces killed at least three Taliban militants last week in a cross fire which lasted until morning after a suicide attack targeted a guest house near the Spanish Embassy in the capital city of Kabul.

Five Afghan policemen died in the attack. The Spanish government confirmed earlier that a Spanish security officer was also killed in the attack.

The attack came a few days after Taliban militants targeted an airport complex in the southern city of Kandahar, killing 50 people.

The Taliban has intensified its attacks in Kabul, going after foreign targets, as well as the government.

This week, The New York Times has reported that US Special Forces had taken part in the battle in Helmand, however, the report has not been confirmed by the NATO headquarters in Kabul.

TRTWorld and agencies