At least 15 suspected Taliban militants were killed in clashes with residents in Samangan province over a period of four days up to Tuesday, April 7. Clashes took place with residents of two villages in Dara-e-Sof-e-Bala district after militants launched an attack on their residences. Reports indicate at least five civilians were wounded and a further 22 Taliban militants were wounded in the fighting. The Taliban militant group have not yet commented on the clashes.
Similar attacks are expected in Samangan province over the near term.
Progress toward Afghan-Taliban negotiations, as stipulated in a US-brokered peace deal, has been hampered by a power struggle between President Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah, who have both recently declared themselves president in competing inauguration ceremonies.
Taliban militants launch attacks on government personnel, security forces, and civilians in Afghanistan on a near-daily basis. Such assaults are, in part, intended to undermine the perceived capacity of Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF), and the Afghan government more broadly, to adequately provide security in the wake of the withdrawal of most US-led NATO forces from the country.
Individuals in the affected areas are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid the vicinities of the attacks, and obey all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
The security environment in Afghanistan remains complex. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.