Almost two dozen Afghan soldiers killed in multiple attacks

Violet Powell
February 25, 2018

At least 18 Afghan soldiers were killed on Saturday in the Bala Boluk district of western Farah province when Taliban fighters stormed an army checkpoint.

Taliban insurgents attacked the checkpoint in Farah province, Defence Ministry spokesperson Dawlat Waziri said.

Interior Ministry spokesman Najib Danish said the attack happened around 8:30 a.m. local time near the Kabul Green Zone, approximately one kilometer (about half a mile) away from where the US Embassy, NATO and other diplomatic compounds are located.

At least 23 people were killed and more than a dozen wounded in multiple suicide bombings and attacks in Afghanistan today, the latest in a series of assaults in the war-torn country. The attack was later claimed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group.

Meanwhile, a suicide bomber has killed three and injured five others in the capital.

The official said the casualty count could rise.

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A surge in suicide attacks and bombings in Afghanistan killed a record number of civilians - nearly 2,300 - last year, more than any previous year of the conflict on record, according to the United Nations.

In one attack, one intelligence agency officer was killed and 16 civilians injured after a terrorist detonated a truck bombing in front of a provincial intelligence office in Lashkar Gah city, capital of southern Helmand province.

A week earlier, militants killed more than 20 people, including four Americans, in an attack on one of the city's top hotels.

A second suicide auto bomber targeted an NDS compound near a police headquarters in Helmand's provincial capital Lashkar Gah. His vehicle, he added, managed to reach the entrance of the army base in Nad Aali district, killing two soldiers and wounding another.

Ahmadi, the Taliban spokesman, also claimed responsibility for the Helmand attacks in a statement sent to journalists.

Militants including the Taliban and the Islamic State group have stepped up their attacks on Afghan troops and police in recent months, sapping morale already hit by desertions and corruption.

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