-ANI): Afghan police, backed by the army and the NATO-led coalition forces, have eliminated 21 militants during cleanup operations in different provinces within the last 24 hours, the country's Interior Ministry said Monday.
"Afghan National Police (ANP) in partnership with army and coalition forces launched 11 cleanup operations in Kunduz, Uruzgan, Wardak, Ghazni, Farah and Helmand provinces, killing 21 armed Taliban militants over the past 24 hours," the ministry said in a statement providing daily operational updates.
The ALP also detained eight militants besides seizing weapons and ammunition and defusing 24 mines, it added.
The Afghan forces and some 100,000 NATO-led coalition troops have intensified cleanup operations against Taliban and other militants recently but the insurgents in retaliation responded by carrying out suicide attacks, roadside bombings and launching target killings.
Militants launched an armed attack killing a local elder in southern Helmand province, an official said earlier Monday.
"The armed militants opened fire against Abdul Samad, an influential elder and father of a senior provincial peace council official named Daud Farhang on Sunday evening in Garmser district, " administrative chief of the district Ayub Omar told Xinhua.
He said Samad was transferred by security forces to a coalition hospital where he died of wounds late Sunday night.
No group claimed responsibility for the attacks so far but the armed Taliban outfit which launched spring offensive on May 3 this year, has said anyone working for government and the NATO-led troops are legitimate target. (Xinhua-ANI)