95 killed in Afghan poll violence

Last Updated: Sat, Sep 18, 2010 16:50 hrs

Kabul, Sep 18 (IANS) At least 89 Taliban militants and six security personnel, including a soldier, were killed and several civilians wounded in clashes in various Afghan provinces amid the country's second parliamentary polls held Saturday, Xinhua reported.

Seventy-one militants were killed as troops raided their hideout in eastern Paktia province Saturday.

'The Taliban gathered in a hideout in Syed Karam district to disrupt the election process, but intelligence reports identified their location, and airpower was called in, killing 71 militants,' Rohullah Samon, spokesman of the provincial administration, told Xinhua.

Meanwhile, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid confirmed the incident to the media and said only four militants were killed in the air raids.

Afghanistan's second parliamentary election was held amid tight security Saturday as Taliban militants vowed to derail it. The voting was, however, held successfully, officials said.

Militants carried out rocket and bomb attacks in various Afghan provinces to disrupt the voting.

Eighteen militants were killed in Chardara, Dasht-e-Archi and Aliabad districts in northern Kunduz province. The operation was carried out by Afghan troops backed by NATO-led forces.

'The operation was launched early this morning during which 18 rebels, including two foreign fighters, had been killed,' provincial governor Mohammad Omar told reporters in Kunduz.

He said the rebels fired over 22 rockets on Kunduz airport and other parts of the province, injuring 16 people.

Six people have died and six others injured northern Baghlan province, provincial Police Chief Abdul Rahman Rahimi said.

'The Taliban rebels attacked a polling station in Dand-e-Shabudin area this morning, as a result five Arbaki (auxiliary police) and one Afghan soldier were killed and six others sustained injuries,' Rahimi told Xinhua.

In eastern Nangarhar province, nine people were injured in Taliban-linked violence. The militants tried to disrupt the voting process.

'The injured have been taken to hospital,' said Baz Mohammad Shirzoi, an official with the provincial health department.

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