Over 170 militants killed in Afghanistan over past day

Afghan security forces keep watch near the site of an explosion in Kabul

At least 15 members of Afghanistan's security forces were killed and wounded as the insurgents overran a district headquarters in the country's western Farah province that borders Iran.


At least 15 Afghan soldiers were killed after Taliban attacked their outpost in western province of Farah overnight, local Ariana News TV reported on Saturday.

"The Anardara district headquarters is under the insurgents' control and right now, an intense battle is going on all around the district centre and government offices", said Bakhtawer.

The Taliban immediately claimed responsibility saying the district is now under their control.

The exact number of killed or wounded is still not clear as the fighting is still under way, officials said.

"Within last 24 hours, 171 militants including six members of the Islamic State [IS terror group] were killed during military operations in 10 provinces", the ministry said in a daily bulletin.

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A senior official in the province said that reinforcements have reached the area in a bid to push back the fighters.

The insurgents have recently stepped up attacks against Afghan security forces across Farah province.

Afghan and U.S. commanders have been relatively upbeat about the course of the war since U.S. President Donald Trump announced a new and more robust military strategy past year, with more air strikes and greater support for Afghan forces.

"If they are not fought back, the district will be taken over entirely".

The pressure on Farah has grown as US air strikes and Afghan army operations have inflicted heavy casualties on Taliban fighters in neighbouring Helmand province, the country's main opium-growing region and a heartland of the insurgency. It came ahead of an expected increase in fighting with the end of winter and the approach of spring.

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