Afghan forces kill 30 Taliban in stepped-up offensive

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In response to growing Taliban attacks, Afghan forces have stepped up group assaults on the militants, killing at least 30 in the Nangarhar province bordering Pakistan, an official confirmed on Saturday.

Attaullah Khogyani, the spokesman for Nangarhar’s governor, told Anadolu Agency that special forces conducted raids on bastions of the Taliban’s Sra Qita (Red Unit) in the Khogyani district last night.

The unit is a kind of rapid force blamed for many of the lethal attacks by the militants across the country.

Khogyani said 30 rebels were killed, five hideouts destroyed, and a large cache of arms and ammunition confiscated. He said security forces sustained no casualties.

Acknowledging the operation, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed claimed in a statement that 13 security forces and three Taliban were killed, saying the militants were there to confront pro-Daesh rebels in the area.

The news followed the National Security Council directing security forces nationwide on Friday to step up counter-terrorism raids in the wake of growing Taliban attacks.

By Shadi Khan Saif

KABUL, Afghanistan

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