Afghanistan: fierce fighting in major provincial capitals | free press

In parallel with the withdrawal of international troops, the Taliban are intensifying their attacks on representatives of the Afghan government. There is currently heavy fighting in several cities.

Kabul (AP) – In Afghanistan, fierce fighting has broken out between government forces and the militant Islamist Taliban in two of the country’s main provincial capitals.

Fighting took place in several districts on Saturday in Laschkarga, the capital of the southern province of Helmand, the province announced. The Taliban attacked the city four days earlier. In the city of Herat in the province of the same name in the west of the country, fighting raged just a few kilometers from the city center. There were also minor clashes in southern Kandahar province.

Helmand, Herat and Kandahar are the three largest provinces of Afghanistan in terms of area. The Taliban also attacked a UN base in Herat on Friday, killing one guard and injuring several others. The UN strongly condemned the attack.

Civilian casualties too

Civilians were also at risk during the fighting in the various provinces. Provincial councilor Abdul Majid Akhundzada told the German news agency that civilians have been killed and injured in Laschkarga. A private hospital where Taliban fighters were hiding was hit by airstrikes.

In Afghanistan, nearly 20 years later, an international military operation that led to the overthrow of the Taliban regime in late 2001 is coming to an end. The German Bundeswehr has already completely withdrawn its troops. The US military mission in the country is expected to end on August 31. However, in recent times, in view of the advance of the Taliban, the US has again carried out more air strikes, with the planes taking off from outside the country.

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