16 Afghan militants killed in security operations

Kabul, March 3: At least 16 Taliban militants were killed in two military operations carried out by Afghan security forces, officials said Sunday.

Nine militants were killed and five wounded when Afghan army commandos launched an operation in Dar-e-Sangara area of Laghman province early Sunday, Xinhua quoted local authorities as saying.

Four militants were also detained, the statement said, adding a Taliban local leader named Abdul Jabbar was among the dead.

On Saturday, seven militants, including their leader named Hajji Rahis were killed when the army conducted a cleanup operation in southern Helmand province, according to Colonel Mohammad Rassoul Zazi of the Army Corps 215 Maiwand.

The army specialists also defused 20 roadside bombs, Zazi noted.

The army and police have stepped up efforts to clear the militants across Afghanistan as the country is preparing for the presidential and provincial council elections slated for April 5.

In an unrelated incident, a civilian named Abdul Jabbar was killed in a bomb attack in Kunar province Sunday.

IANS