American forces carried out a number of airstrikes in assist of Afghan safety forces underneath assault by the Taliban in southern Helmand province, a spokesperson for the U.S. army in Afghanistan mentioned Monday.
Col. Sonny Leggett mentioned the current Taliban assaults in Helmand are “not constant” with a U.S.-Taliban deal signed in February and undermine ongoing intra-Afghan peace talks. He mentioned the airstrikes don’t violate the February deal.
The Taliban “want to instantly cease their offensive actions in Helmand Province and cut back their violence across the nation,” Leggett mentioned in an announcement on Twitter, quoting Gen. Scott Miller, the commander of the U.S. Forces in Afghanistan.
Leggett mentioned that U.S. forces have and can proceed to supply assist in defence of Afghan nationwide safety forces underneath assault by the Taliban.
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The announcement of U.S. strikes got here after a gunbattle on Monday was reported in and round Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand province.
Witnesses reported sporadic capturing within the metropolis and mentioned some residents fled from the districts of Nad Ali and Nawa due to the preventing.
Omer Zwak, spokesperson for the provincial governor in Helmand, mentioned Taliban fighters had began their co-ordinated assaults in numerous elements of the province over the previous week and that these had intensified over the weekend.
“The Taliban have destroyed a number of bridges over the principle freeway, so the freeway is closed proper now and nobody can journey,” mentioned Zwak.
Representatives of the Afghan authorities and the Taliban are holding intra-Afghan negotiations in Qatar, a Gulf nation the place the Taliban have had a political workplace for a few years. The negotiations are supposed to finish the nation’s decades-long warfare.
Related Press author Rahim Faiez in Kabul, Afghanistan, contributed to this report.
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