Afghan Taliban seize key district in Helmand

Kabul, Dec 21 (IANS) The Afghan Taliban seized control of Sangin district in the country’s Helmand province, sources said on Monday.

After heavy clashes with the security forces in Sangin, the Taliban captured all government offices in the district centre on Sunday night, Xinhua cited a provincial security source as saying.

The security forces retreated to an army’s installation in ouster side of the district, where heavy clashes were going on, the source said.

The forces were at urgent need of ammunition and air power support as they engaged with the militants, he added.

The district, located in provincial capital Lashkar Gah, has been regarded as a tragic area in the province.

Earlier on Monday, the Afghan government Chief Executive Officer Abudllah Abdullah held a special meeting with the country’s top security officials to review the situation in Helmand.

“The government has taken measures to take immediate actions in Helmand. The actions will repel enemy attacks,” Abdullah said.

Helmand, notorious for poppy growing, is also a known Taliban stronghold.

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