Taliban Fighters Attack Afghan Base, Kill at Least 26 Soldiers

Taliban Claims to Have Killed More Than 70

Taliban forces attacked an Afghan military base in the Kandahar Province overnight, overrunning the base and killing at least 26 soldiers, wounding 13 others. Locals say hundreds of Taliban attacked the base in all directions, and the battle lasted hours.

The death toll appears to be very much in dispute. 26 is the minimum reported killed, but the initial Afghan intelligence report said 40 were slain, and the Taliban itself claimed to have killed over 70 soldiers. The Afghani Defense Ministry claimed to have “killed or wounded” around 80 Taliban.

The Afghan Defense Ministry also confirmed that seven soldiers were kidnapped in the incident, and that there are another 21 soldiers missing outright. The Taliban confirmed that they had taken seven captives in the raid.

Also significant, the Taliban reported that in overrunning the base they seized large amounts of weapons and vehicles that were at the site at the time. This has become a growing problem, with the Taliban increase securing large amounts of US-provided weapons from Afghan military and police in such fighting.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.