Another strategic district in Afghanistan on verge of collapse to Taliban

Another strategic district in Afghanistan on verge of collapse to Taliban

MAIMANA - Hundreds of Taliban militants stormed the headquarters of Almar district in northern Faryab province, killing two policemen. Locals warned the district would collapse if reinforcements did not arrive.

Mohammad Saleh Saleh, the Almar district chief, told Pajhwok Afghan News that the Taliban attacked the district center on Monday night, sparking a battle that killed two policemen.

Having no information if the Taliban had suffered any casualties, Saleh accused the government of negligence and not equipping security forces.

He said the government should have launched a clearing operation long ago and that the Taliban outnumbered local security forces at least 10 times.

Saleh also claimed the Taliban were running a bomb making factory in Abgardan area of the district, which they captured five months ago.

The Taliban had so far attacked the district center and the district police building many times during the past two weeks, the official said.

Saleh said the central government and provincial governments had ignored these attacks and warned the district would fall to the Taliban if the situation continued.

Meanwhile, Mohammad Hanif Bai, Faryab highway commander, said his forces had reached the district center soon after the Taliban launched attack on it on Monday night.

He said his nephew, Turdi Pahlawan and a sergeant were killed during the clash with the Taliban in Almar district center.

Gen. Ghulam Faroq Qatay, an uprising commander in Almar, also criticized the government for negligence and said only five of 90 villages in the district were under the government control.