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Afghan insurgents toll rises to 85
Cat : Afghanistan
Date : 2006-06-20 11:25:14                      Reader : 296
US with its advanced technology and military machinery should find a way out to avoid innocent people , and never kill on guessing and suspension !! US is not Taliban . US must respect international law.


CNN.COM 20/6/2006

Afghan insurgents toll rises to 85


KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- Taliban militants mounted new attacks Sunday as Afghan and coalition troops pressed on with a major offensive that has killed about 85 suspected insurgents in targeted operations in the past few days, officials said.

More than 10,000 U.S.-led troops have spread out over four southern provinces as part of Operation Mountain Thrust, a counter-insurgency blitz aimed at quelling a Taliban resurgence.

On Sunday, a convoy carrying a former provincial chief of Helmand was ambushed by Taliban militants, who killed him and four of his bodyguards, said the governor’s spokesman, Ghulam Mohiudin. The official, Jama Gul, had been traveling along the highway between Sangin and Grishk districts, he said.

In nearby Zabul province, a joint operation between police and coalition forces in Shahjoy district left two militants dead. Two other wounded insurgents were arrested, said provincial police chief Noor Mohammad Paktin.

Afghan soldiers, along with U.S., Canadian and British troops, are spreading out over Helmand, Uruzgan, Kandahar and Zabul provinces to hunt down Taliban fighters blamed for a recent surge in ambushes and bombings.

More than 500 people have been killed in the past month as insurgents, primarily Taliban, step up attacks against coalition and Afghan troops across the country.

On Saturday, British troops battled Taliban fighters near Kajaki dam in southern Helmand province, killing six insurgents, Capt. Drew Gibson said on Sunday.

In the past few days, militants had been firing mortars in an attempt to damage the dam, Gibson said, adding that British forces "have tightened security in this area."

An estimated 40 fighters were killed Friday when coalition forces surprised militants as they gathered at a "known enemy camp" in Khod Valley, part of Shahidi Hassas district of Uruzgan province, the military said Saturday.

Among those killed were financiers, members of a bomb-making cell, and area leaders responsible for attacks against Afghan civilians and the army, the military said.

"Coalition forces have delivered a quick and severe blow to the enemy today," spokesman Lt. Col. Paul Fitzpatrick said Saturday.

In a separate incident, Afghan and coalition forces conducted a raid on a Taliban compound near Tirin Kot, the capital of Uruzgan, killing five insurgents, the military said. They also seized about eight pounds of opium.

One U.S. soldier was wounded in the raid. He was later listed in stable condition.

Meanwhile, a roadside bomb on Friday killed two coalition soldiers on a security sweep of the area in eastern Kunar province, the military said. The soldiers’ nationalities were not released.

Violence continued into the weekend as a suicide attacker on a motorcycle detonated his explosives near a group of Afghan soldiers in southwestern Nimroz province, killing himself and wounding two soldiers and three bystanders, provincial officials said.

Seven militants and one policeman were killed during a gun battle in southern Kandahar, the Interior Ministry said.

Last week, coalition forces had announced that they killed an estimated 40 militants in a remote, mountainous area of southeastern Paktika province in operations supporting Mountain Thrust.

The operation, which began with limited raids in mid-May, rolled out in earnest last week to help prepare for the hand-over of military control to NATO forces in the next several weeks.

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