By Shadi Khan Saif
At least 8 soldiers were killed and 11 others were wounded when Taliban fighters launched an attack on the regional headquarters of an Afghan military corps in northern Balkh province on Friday, according to an army spokesman.
The army’s 209-Shaheen Corps -- which came under attack -- is responsible for planning and executing anti-Taliban operations in the north of the country.
The assault began at around 2 p.m. local time (0930GMT) and lasted for a few hours, Ministry of Defense spokesman Gen. Dawlat Waziri said.
The attackers had arrived in two police vehicles in an attempt to breach the security ring around the army headquarters and enter the main compound; however, they were intercepted.
“One of the Rangers [American-made pick-up for the Afghan security forces] was destroyed, the militants fired a rocket that hit the mosque,” Waziri told the media.
“The operation has concluded, we have recovered the five bodies of the enemy, and one has been captured alive, our casualties are eight martyrs and 11 wounded,” he said in a final message sent to the media at 6.15 p.m. local time (1345GMT).
Taliban spokesman Zabehullah Mujahid said three top Afghan military were among those killed in the attack.
A few days back the Taliban confirmed the death of their so-called governor for northern Baghlan province in a security operation.
Afghan forces have killed at least three such Taliban governors among scores of fighters in the north this year so far.