42 Taliban killed after action by Afghan special forces

KABUL, ($1= 81.17 Afghan Afghanis) – In joint operations carried out by the Afghan National Army with the support of the country’s air force on the outskirts of the city of Lashkargoh, the center of Helmand province, in the south of the country, 42 Taliban militants were killed and 6 were injured, the press center of the Afghan Defense Ministry said on Wednesday morning.

Meanwhile, the press office of the Afghan president confirmed that the head of state, Muhammad Ashraf Ghani, arrived on Wednesday morning in the city of Mazar-i-Sharif, the center of Balkh province, in the northwest of the country.

“President Muhammad Ashraf Ghani arrived in Balkh province this morning with a high-level government delegation to discuss the overall security situation in the northern zone,”, said in the official statement of the press service of the President of the IRA.

Tolo News, citing sources, reports that a meeting is scheduled to be held in Mazar-i-Sharif today to discuss the security situation in the north of the country with the participation of Marshal Abdul Rashid Dostum, leader of the Islamic Society party, former governor of Balkh province Atta Muhammad Nour, commanders of the security and defense services Balkh province.

Sources say the meeting will decide on coordination between the defense forces and popular mobilization, as well as how to begin operations to return territories seized by the Taliban.

Last night, the former vice-president, leader of the National Islamic Movement party [uniting the country’s Turkic-speaking population], Marshal Abdul Rashid Dostum, arrived in the “northern capital” of Afghanistan on a special flight from Kabul, accompanied by several hundred special forces

This morning, the Taliban announced their capture of the city of Faizabad in the center of Badakhshan province, in northeastern Afghanistan. Taliban officials also claim that they took control of the city of Puli Khumri, the center of Baghlan province, the night before.

According to them, it is the ninth provincial center out of 34 in the country to have come under the control of radicals in the past three days. A Taliban spokesman says the movement now controls the provincial capitals of Nimruz, Jowzjan, Sari Pul, Kunduz, Takhar, Samangan, Farah, Baghlan, and Badakhshan.

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