Some 700 Taliban fighters attacked the Ajrestan District of Ghazni Province earlier this week and seem to have more or less taken it over, with provincial officials saying they have lost contact with police in the area.
Fighting is still reportedly raging into the weekend, with over 100 killed and Afghan Army forces being pushed back and giving the Taliban effective control over the extremely important district, which includes the nation’s main highway, which goes from Kabul to Kandahar.
The Taliban has made increasing gains across the south and central portions of Afghanistan in recent months, as NATO tries to stay back and let the Afghan military prove itself in direct fighting. So far, the news hasn’t been good.
Afghan officials are warning that the losses underscore the need to negotiate a settlement with the Taliban to end the fighting, saying that without NATO occupation forces they simply can’t defeat the Taliban in combat.