Afghan security forces, 8 Taliban militants killed in Afghanistan clashes

Heavy clashes in W. Afghanistan city as major Taliban offensive kicks off

Despite heavy clashes in Farah city, since early Tuesday, a spokesman for the Interior Ministry (MoI) Najib Danish said that no government organization has fallen to the Taliban.

Samihullah Samim, a lawmaker from Farah, said parts of the city are under Taliban control with heavy fighting just 300 metres from the governor's residence.

President Ghani early Tuesday visited MoD and held a security meeting over Farah city and ordered forces to be deployed to prevent "enemy attacks", a spokesman for President Haroon Chakhansuri tweeted.

Farah, Ghor, Baghlan, Nangarhar and Zabul are among 10 provinces that have witnessed ongoing heavy clashes between security forces and Taliban in recent days and the continuation of the clashes have raised concerns among the people, MPs and politicians.

According to a local hospital official, at least two people were killed and 16 more were injured, including Abdul Raziq Sherzad, the deputy police chief. He said casualties were high but couldn't provide a precise number. The residents feared that the Taliban radical movement would gain control of the city if the government did not send more troops soon, the media outlet said.

"An intense battle is going on in the city", he said without providing additional details.

"If the security forces can't take control of the whole city by the end of the day, then it will be very hard to take control of the city anytime soon", Samim said.

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He said the Taliban targeted Haidr Qali, Sayedabad and Yazdi areas of the provincial capital with suicide bombing, rockets and auto bombing.

"No comments have been received from the anti-government armed militant groups including Taliban militants" militants in connection with this report by far.

The town of Kunduz in the country's north fell to the militants twice in 2015, forcing the United States to coordinate air and ground attacks to regain control of the center.

A resurgent Taliban, largely dependent on narcotics revenues, has expanded its sway in the country since the withdrawal of most worldwide combat forces at the end of 2014.

Afghan officials said police special forces from Kandahar and commandos from Herat had also been deployed.

Afghan security forces have struggled to combat the Taliban and IS since the USA and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation formally concluded their combat role in the country in 2014, shifting to a support and counterterrorism mission.

Despite security concerns, the Taliban have pledged to cooperate with the gas project.

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