Taliban attack Afghan security forces in north, killing 37

An Afghan police pickup truck transports injured victims following a suicide attack in Kabul on July 22, 2018. (File/AFP)
Updated 10 September 2018
0

Taliban attack Afghan security forces in north, killing 37

KABUL: Taliban insurgents have launched separate attacks on Afghan security forces in the country's north, killing at least 37, provincial officials said Monday.
Mohammad Yusouf Ayubi, head of the provincial council in Kunduz province, said that at least 13 security forces were killed in an attack on a checkpoint they were manning in Dashti Archi district, with another 15 security forces wounded there. The firefight began late Sunday and continued into Monday morning.
Meanwhile in Jawzjan province, Provincial Police Chief Gen. Faqir Mohammad Jawzjani said the Taliban attacked Khamyab district from different directions, forcing Afghan forces to withdraw from the district headquarters to avoid civilian causalities.
"There was intense fighting and we didn't want civilian houses destroyed, or any civilian casualties," said Jawzjani. He said that at least eight policemen were killed and three other police were wounded. Seven Taliban were killed and eight were wounded during the gun battle, he added.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed responsibility for the group for the attacks in Kunduz and Jawzjan provinces.
The Taliban also killed another 14 local Afghan policemen and pro-government militiamen in the Dara Suf district of Samangan province, provincial spokesman Sediq Azizi said, adding that six others were also wounded.
Azizi added that three Taliban fighters were killed and four others were wounded during the Monday morning battle.
No one claimed responsibility for the attack in Samangan, but Azizi blamed Taliban insurgents who are active in the province and often target Afghan security forces and local, pro-government militias.
In another report from northern Sari Pul province, provincial police chief Gen. Abdul Qayum Baqizai said that Taliban attacked checkpoints of the army and pro-government militia near the provincial capital, Sari Pul city.
Two pro-government militia fighters were killed and two others wounded, he said, but had no details on any possible casualties among the army.
"The Taliban's attack has been repelled, but sporadic gun battles are underway at the outskirts of the city," he added.
The Taliban hasn't yet commented on the fighting in Sari Pul province.


Cobra Gold: One of Asia’s largest war drills opens in Thailand

Updated 19 min 53 sec ago
0

Cobra Gold: One of Asia’s largest war drills opens in Thailand

  • Cobra Gold is one of the largest military exercises in Asia
  • On Saturday US, Thai and South Korean forces descended on Namsai beach in Chonburi province in a joint drill intended to simulate securing the territory

SATTAHIP, Thailand: With weapons drawn camouflaged troops leapt out of amphibious assault craft while explosions sounded and parachutists glided in from above as the annual Cobra Gold war games took over a placid Thai beach Saturday.
Now in its 38th year, Cobra Gold is one of the largest military exercises in Asia, bringing thousands of forces from the United States, Thailand and other countries together for 11 days of training on Thai shores.
This year’s drill includes some 2,000 US Marines, 1,000 US soldiers and hundreds from the country’s Navy and Air Force.
On Saturday US, Thai and South Korean forces descended on Namsai beach in Chonburi province in a joint drill intended to simulate securing the territory.
Captain Melvin Spiese said the goal was to “bring power from ship to shore” and be ready for “any kind of future crisis we might need to respond to with our Thai counterparts.”
Helicopters buzzed overhead and fighter jets roared across the skies.
Cobra Gold exercises span air, land and sea and feature a jungle survivalist session where participants take turns drinking blood from a severed cobra and snacking on insects and scorpions.
Singapore, Japan, Indonesia and Malaysia also took part in the war games.
A 2014 army coup in Thailand tested ties with Washington and the kingdom tilted towards China with high-profile arms buys.
But US military sales continued and the two countries have upped their engagement under US President Donald Trump, who has stepped back on human rights issues and invited junta chief Prayut Chan-O-Cha to the White House.
Prayut, who led the 2014 coup, is standing for prime minister in elections set for March 24.