Afghan special forces deployed to repel Taliban, regain Helmand territory

Afghan National Army Commandos and Special Forces from the National Directorate of Security (NDS) launched a major military operation on Monday night, with the help of air support, to bring the Helmand situation under control, officials said Tuesday.

According to the Helmand governor’s office, operations by these special forces were launched in Nad Ali and Babaji districts on Monday night as well as in other areas.

The governor’s office said new check posts have been established in Nad Ali, with one being used as the key base for operations.

Other check posts have been established in Lashkargah, the provincial capital, and joint operations are underway to clear the areas of the insurgents.

Officials said at least nine Taliban insurgents were killed and six other wounded during air and ground operations in Nad Ali, Sangin and Babaji areas overnight and vehicles and weapons seized were destroyed.

The provincial officials also said the Taliban fighters in Lashkargah had been pushed back from the city.

Clashes broke out on Saturday night in various parts of the province when the Taliban launched a coordinated attack on numerous areas, including parts of Lashkargah.

They have since then forced thousands of people to flee their homes, destroyed a large power plant in the province, cutting electricity to not only Lashgargah but neighboring Kandahar province.