Taliban kills dozens of soldiers, policemen in Helmand

Dozens of police officers and soldiers killed in Taliban offensive since Sunday in Helmand

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

An Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers drive at an outpost in Helmand province, December 20, 2015.

Since Sunday, the Taliban has killed dozens of Afghan soldiers and policemen in an offensive in the southern Helmand Province, officials said.

According to three local officials, who spoke on condition of anatomy -since they are not allowed to announce casualty figures- said that 25 soldiers and 27 police officers had been killed during the offensive launched by the Taliban. 

Insurgents launched a suicide attack on Sunday at a checkpoint in Sangin, using seized military Humvee vehicles, which were loaded with explosives. During the suicide attack, seven soldiers and 15 policemen lost their lives.

In separate attacks, which took place again in and around Sangin, on Sunday, 18 police were left dead. Additionally, 10 other policemen were killed as they were fighting with insurgents in Gereshk, located north of the district capital Lashkar Gah.

A gunman dressed in police uniform killed two policemen in Khan Nashim on Monday night. 

The Taliban cut off main roads in the district, blocking the reinforcements and supplies to the Afghan units. 

"Right now, some 250 police and 300 soldiers are surrounded by Taliban in Marjah and our forces are providing them support from the air," one of the officials said.

"Roads to Sangin are mostly blocked with explosive devices and we cannot send reinforcements."

Last year, at least 11,000 civilians were killed and many others wounded in Afghanistan. It was the worst year for the casualties since the United Nations began to record in 2009.

TRTWorld and agencies