Heavy clashes in Kandahar after Taliban move in to take over districts

Heavy clashes between the Afghan National Security and Defense Forces (ANSDF) are underway in the Arghandab district of southern Kandahar province, officials confirmed Saturday evening.

The clashes broke out five days ago after a large number of insurgents attacked dozens of security outposts in Arghandab, Panjwai, and Zherai districts, they said.

Security officials stated that dozens of Taliban militants have been killed in skirmishes but they did not provide details about casualties among the Afghan forces.

Jamal Nasir Barikzai, a spokesman for Kandahar police told Ariana News that at least 75 Taliban fighters have been killed in these districts so far.

“The Taliban use civilian houses (as shields) therefore our operations are underway with full caution to avoid civilian casualties,” Barikzai added.

Meanwhile, the clashes have also displaced dozens of families. They stated that they have left everything behind and there is no hope of returning as “our houses and gardens are being used as strongholds.”

The security officials, however, stated that not only are ground operations underway but troops are getting air support to help clear the province of Taliban insurgents.