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Fear grips Sangin residents as clash goes on

Fear grips Sangin residents as clash goes on

Jan 30, 2017 - 18:35

LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): A fierce clash continued on Monday between security forces and Talibaninfo-icon militants in the Sangin district of southern Helmand province.

The clash erupted after dozens of armed militants stormed security posts in the troubled district, with each side claiming to have inflicted heavy casualties on the other.

Omar Zwak, the governor’s spokesman, told Pajhwok Afghan News the Taliban militants stormed security check-posts in Sangian in the morning and were pushed back and inflicted heavy causalities. But he gave no figure.

Meanwhile, 215 Miwaind Military Corps spokesman, Lt. Col. Mohammad Rasoul Zazi, said the militants attacked Afghan National Army (ANA) posts and the district center. He said the clash was under way but the attackers had been pushed back.

Shamsullah Sehrai, a tribal elder, the incident clash but had no information about causalities.

Qari Yusuf Ahmadi, Taliban spokesman, claimed the fighters captured 20 security posts, seized weapons and killed several security forces.

A number residents of the district said they could face an ugly situation tonight if security reinforcements did not reach there. They said the clash was still ongoing.

Social council head in Sangin, Haji Ghulam Jan, told Pajhwok that there were only 40 army and police personnel and the Taliban controlled the rest of the district except the district administration building.

He said the army personnel were stationed at the residence of an influential person, Haji Lal Jan, but the Taliban were able to enter the building with explosives through a tunnel. The explosives were detonated, he said.

He said the Taliban also blew up a private hospital owned by Haji Lal Jan. He said the clash was ongoing and fresh forces should be sent to the district as soon as possible, otherwise the locals would face an ugly fate.

Another elder, Haji Gul Mohammad, confirmed the clash. He said the government should pull out the existing forces from Sangin or send additional forces. “Because we don’t want to more youth lost to the conflict.”

The governor’s spokesman, Omar Zwak, earlier said enough security forces were available in Sangin and the rebels could not advance.

Rasoul Zazi, the Maiwand Military Corps spokesman, said the Taliban had not entered explosives to the military base but to an inn. He said the clash was ongoing, but the attacks had been pushed back.

A source in the commando forces in Helmand told Pajhwok that the commandos had reached the district and the situation would be brought under control soon.



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