On August 15, Taliban fighters conducted a hit and run attack on several military bases and checkpoints of the Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP) in the district of Baghlan-i Markazi in the northern province of Baghlan, according to the Taliban news agency Voice of Jihad.
The Taliban claimed that its fighters killed more than 70 personnel of the ANA and the ANP during the attack, including several officers. Furthermore, Voice of Jihad said that Taliban fighters captured four vehicles and several heavy and light machineguns.
An unnamed Afghan official confirmed to the al-Jazeera TV that 9 Afghan policemen and 35 soldiers of the ANA were killed in the Taliban attack. According to the Qatari TV channel, Taliban fighters set fire to the bases and checkpoints before withdrawing.
Voice of Jihad said that the attack in Baghlan-i Markazi was a part of the Taliban’s spring offensive, codenamed “Operation al-Khandagh”, which was launched on April 25 in response to Washington’s decision to increase the US military presence in Afghanistan.
This was the second largest attack of the Taliban this month. Last week, the Afghan group killed more than 200 personnel of the ANA and the ANP in a large-scale attack on the southeastern city of Ghazni.
These attacks didn’t only inflict heavy casualties on Afghan government forces, but also proved that the Taliban’s influence and military capabilities are growing.