Scores Killed as Afghan, Taliban Forces Continue Offensives

Afghan military seizes 90 motorcycles in Kandahar Province raids

While there are high hopes for peace conferences coming in the next few weeks, fighting continues to rage in Afghanistan. At least 48 combatants were killed over the course of the weekend in southern Afghanistan.

In Kandahar Province, the Afghan military reported on a series of operations that killed at least 37 Taliban and wounded 28 others. They reported large weapons caches seized, and 90 motorcycles believed to belong to the Taliban were also taken. The Taliban has not commented on the operations.

The Taliban appears to have been active in nearby Helmand, where they killed 11 Afghan troops on Sunday evening. Nine were killed in a offensive on the highway, while the other two were slain in a car bomb.

Kandahar and Helmand have been the Taliban’s main strongholds for years, and the group has had effective control of much of Kandahar throughout that, while often contesting control over Helmand’s provincial capital.

There are hopes that a deal will be reached on a ceasefire at the Istanbul conference, and this surge of fighting likely reflects that expectation, as both sides try to get some last minute gains before the deal.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.