Clashes kill 57, wounds 37 policemen in S. Afghanistan

ISLAMABAD, May 30 (KUNA) — At least 57 Afghan policemen were killed and another 37 wounded during two days of clashes in Afghanistan’s southern Helmand province, said officials on Monday.
The 505 Bost zone police commander in Helmand, Maj. Gen. Asmatullah Dawlatzai told media that the clashes that erupted between security forces and Taliban rebels two days ago were still underway in Greshk and Nad Ali districts of the province.
He confirmed that 27 policemen were killed and 26 others wounded in Shawal area of Nad Ali, and 25 more policemen were killed and nine wounded in Malgir area of Greshk district. Five policemen including an Afghan Local Police commander had been killed and another two wounded during a clash in Sra Shakh area of Greshk, he added.
The police commander confirmed that Taliban have captured 10 security check posts from Afghan police in those areas, adding that Afghan National Army and insurgents have also suffered casualties but exact figures could not be ascertained yet. According to local media, Taliban spokesperson Qari Yousaf Ahmadi claimed that over 70 personnel of security forces lost their lives in the clashes.
Taliban rebels are currently in control of four districts of the province and some Afghan public representatives on Monday expressed fear that if security enforcements did not reach Helmand within 48 hours, the whole province would fall into the hands of Taliban. The attack came at a time when Taliban rebels have vowed to continue their spring offensive against the security forces after as US drone strike killed Taliban leader. (end)

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