Afghan Security Forces have started military operations in parts of Musa Qala district of Helmand province to recapture the area from Taliban insurgents, officials said on Friday.
Provincial spokesman Omar Zowak told TOLOnews that Afghan forces have started a large scale operation in Musa Qala district and at the moment clashes are ongoing between the forces and the Taliban.
Zowak did not provide details about casualties.
On Wednesday officials from Musa Qala said that the area was in danger of collapsing into the hands of the Taliban.
There was however contradictory reports with some Provincial Council members who said that Musa Qala had already collapsed to the Taliban. In addition they say insurgents have torched a clinic and a school.
The council members said on Wednesday “the insurgents have also stolen a radio system from the police forces”.
But, Mohammad Jan Rasoulyar, Deputy Governor of Helmand has not confirmed reports of its collapse but said that heavy clashes continue and that by Thursday more than 150 Taliban insurgents had so far been killed.
The Afghan and foreign air forces are also supporting the ground forces in the battle field, according to the officials.
In addition, Taliban insurgents once again had retaken control of Astana Baba area of Sheren Tagab district of Faryab province.
Sheren Tagab district governor Loqman Gahrik said that Astana Baba area once again collapsed to the Taliban on Wednesday.
According to officials the area was cleared of insurgents in an operation led by first Vice-President General Abdul Rashid Dostum in which more than 80 villages were cleared, 50 Taliban were killed, four were arrested and more than a hundred joined the government’s peace process.
The district governor said Thursday that after Dostum left for Sar-e-Pul on Wednesday the Taliban used the opportunity to carry out attacks and re-captured most parts of the Astana Baba area of Shiren Tagab district.
According to the district governor more than 50 local policemen disappeared after the Taliban attack.
Meanwhile in another operation, Afghan troops have re taken Kohistanat district of Sar-e-Pul province.
According to the Ministry of Defense (MoD) the district has been cleared of insurgents by Afghan forces but that the operation continues.
There are no reports on casualties yet.