Sydney, Oct. 9: Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan’s Oruzgan province are dispirited and unable to attack anything but weak targets, an Australian military commander has said.
Australia’s commander in Afghanistan, Lieutenant Colonel Trent Scott, who leads the 3rd Battalion (3RAR) based task group, said that the ‘Afghan summer fighting season’ had been busy but is now tapering off.
“They definitely are not game to take on Australian forces and they will avoid direct contact,” the Courier Mail quoted Scott as saying, who added that they were “a dispirited fractured bunch of small groups running around the countryside”.
Scott said that the Taliban militants knew they were not prepared to take on the Afghan National Army (ANA), as it has increasingly become professional and was competent in its presence across the Oruzgan province.
According to the report, the insurgents have been pushed out of the key population centres to the fringes of the province.
“They will attack opportunity or weaker targets if they present but they have no ability to mass into significant numbers,” Scott said.
Insurgent activity traditionally peaks in the summer fighting season but the recent downturn is reflected in lower casualty figures. This year, six Australian soldiers have died and 28 were wounded, as compared to 11 dead and 50 wounded in 2011 and 10 dead and 65 wounded in 2010, the report said. (ANI)