Taliban Forces Overrun Afghan Town Bilchiragh: Spokesman
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Afghan Taliban claimed to have captured Bilchiragh district in Afghanistan’s northern province of Faryab, saying all military forces in the town have defected to the Taliban.
Taliban Spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a statement that the group has conquered all government buildings and police stations in the town, adding that all military forces and civilians there have joined the Taliban.
Last week, the Taliban launched an assault on the southeastern Afghan city of Ghazni and infiltrated deep into the key provincial capital.
A five-day battle between the government forces and the Taliban in Ghazni killed at least 100 members of Afghan security forces and 35 civilians before calm was restored on August 15, while a UN report quoted "unverifiable numbers" that put the civilian death toll at more than 200.
Elsewhere in Afghanistan on Friday, the Taliban ambushed and killed five local police officers in northern Baghlan province, according to Ekramuddin Sarih, the provincial chief police.
Last week, Reuters quoted two senior Taliban officials as saying that the group was considering announcing a ceasefire during the upcoming Eid al-Adha holiday.
Prior to the fierce fighting in Ghazni, there had been strong hopes of a repeat of the three-day truce during the Eid-al Fitr holiday in June, the most concrete sign of progress toward peace in Afghanistan since talks between the government and the Taliban broke down in 2015.