Taliban killed or captured an entire Afghan National Army company of more than 50 soldiers on Monday, Afghan officials said.
The attack, in which the Taliban were reported to have killed 16 soldiers and taken 40 prisoner, took place in northwestern Badghis Province, close to the country’s western border with Turkmenistan, NYT reported.
According to the report , a large force of Taliban insurgents surrounded a base in the Bala Murghab district. After four hours of fighting, the militants captured or killed all of the soldiers in their base, as well as others at two outposts nearby, according to Abdul Aziz Beg, head of the Badghis provincial council.
The episode was the deadliest in a weeklong insurgent campaign that has killed, wounded or captured 70 soldiers in the district, Mr. Beg said. “The district is on the verge of collapse,” Mr. Beg said. “The fighting has gone on for a week, but the government is not paying any attention.”
Qais Mangal, a spokesman for the Afghan Ministry of Defense, confirmed the attack and said that four security outposts were captured by the Taliban. “We lost contact with all of the personnel there,” he was quoted as saying by NYT. “We don’t know the casualty figures.”