Taliban raids kill dozens of Afghan security personnel
KABUL: Dozens of Afghan police officers and soldiers have been killed in a wave of Taliban attacks on checkpoints in Afghanistan, officials said Tuesday, as insurgents step up assaults on the security forces.
The raids in the southern province of Kandahar and the western province of Farah Monday night came hours after a suicide attacker rammed an explosives-laden vehicle into a U.S. military convoy, wounding four soldiers.
The Taliban issued statements on their social media accounts claiming the attacks.
“I can confirm that last night the Taliban launched a wave of attacks on police checkpoints in Maiwand and Zhari districts and we lost 22 brave policemen,” Kandahar governor spokesman Qudrat Khushbakht told AFP.
He added that 45 militants were killed during the fighting that lasted around six hours.
In one of the attacks militants used an explosives-packed police pickup to ambush a checkpoint, Kandahar police spokesman Matiullah Helal told AFP.
At least 15 policemen were wounded in the coordinated assaults.
The attack on the U.S. military convoy in Kandahar added to the casualty toll.
“There were a total of four U.S. service members injured and all are in stable condition in U.S. medical treatment facilities,” a spokesman for NATO’s Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan said, adding there were no fatalities.
Farah governor spokesman Naser Mehri told AFP nine Afghan National Army soldiers were killed in two separate attacks in the province bordering Iran that also claimed the lives of at least three civilians.
“There are signs the Taliban may have used night vision technology to approach and surprise our forces, though they were spotted before reaching the posts and suffered casualties,” Mehri said.
Analysts said the Taliban’s almost daily attacks are intended to show their ability to strike even heavily defended targets. –
Afghan security personnel at a checkpoint in Helmand.