The Afghan government forces have killed 38 members of the Taliban when they attempted to storm a prison in the southwestern city of Lashkargah in Helmand province, the Afghan defense ministry informed on Monday.
This comes as many parts of the city have fallen to the Taliban in recent weeks, TOLO News reported. Afghanistan has witnessed a spike in violence as the Taliban stepped up its offensive in the country.
"The terrorist Taliban attack on Lashkargah, Helmand provincial center prison failed last night. Of the 40 terrorists who attacked the prison, 38 were killed and 2 were injured," Afghan defense ministry spokesperson Fawad Aman said on Monday.
Local media reported that fighting broke out between the Taliban and the Afghan forces on Sunday. Afghan government deployed special forces in Lashkar Gah to protect local residents.
Afghan lawmakers said that the city will be out of the government's control if it does not receive additional support.
"The fighting has reached District 1 and is 100 meters or 200 meters away from the provincial governor's compound. Fighting is underway to capture the base in the province and the people are concerned," said Ghulam Wali Afghan, an MP from Helmand.
Another MP Karim Atal said clashes are underway near the Helmand governor's compound, the police headquarters and the NDS office. "They will fall if attention is not paid to them," he said.
Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) spokesperson said strong defensive lines have been established in Helmand, Herat and Kandahar and that there are no serious problems in the cities of these provinces.
However, the Afghan news agency reported that 70 districts, as well as the Spin Boldak border town, fell to the Taliban in July. The government meanwhile claimed that 11 districts had been retaken from the Taliban. (ANI)