Taliban Kill a Governor and Overrun a Government Compound

Marsha Scott
April 13, 2018

The Taliban stormed a government compound in central Afghanistan early on Thursday, triggering an hours-long gunbattle that killed 15, including three top local officials, before they drove Afghan forces out.

Bagram District Gov. Abdul Shukoor Qudusi said the driver was wounded in the explosion late Wednesday night, which set several shops in the area on fire.

The Taliban controls large swaths of Ghazni, a strategic province near the border with Pakistan.

Provincial officials said on April 12 that police and intelligence officers were also among those killed in the overnight raid on the Khwaja Omari district headquarters in Ghazni Province.

The Taliban then torched the district headquarters, he said.

Anti-government elements also continued to direct attacks against the minority Shiite community, with 154 of its members killed or wounded, "nearly all from suicide and complex attacks" claimed by IS, the report said.

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"Five National Directorate of Security operatives, Khwaja Omari district governor and seven police force members were martyred (in the attack)", he added.

The assault comes as the Western-backed government in Kabul has been struggling to fend off the Taliban and other militant groups since the withdrawal of most North Atlantic Treaty Organisation troops in 2014.

The attack was one of the deadliest by the Taliban in several weeks and comes as the militants prepare to launch their annual spring offensive, which marks the beginning of the traditional fighting season.

They are under pressure to take up President Ashraf Ghani's offer of peace talks but so far they have not responded directly to the proposal.

"All parties to the conflict in Afghanistan must do everything in their power to protect civilians from harm", said Ingrid Hayden, the secretary-general's deputy special representative for Afghanistan.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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