Afghan conflicts’ monthly casualties decline in April


KABUL: The monthly casualties of Afghan war and conflicts have decreased in April despite increasing Taliban attacks in spring and summer known as the fighting season in the war-torn country.
The Taliban-led attacks and conflicts claimed more than 90 lives while leaving over 165 others injured in the month, compared with more than 170 and 130 for the previous month, respectively.
On April 28, more than 500 Taliban launched a massive attack on an Afghan National Army (ANA) base in eastern Paktika province, killing five ANA soldiers and injuring six others.
Up to 60 militants were also killed in day-long clashes in Ziruk district of the province, 155 km south of the Afghan capital of Kabul.
On the same day two aid workers were shot dead in northern Faryab province.
More than 15 major bomb attacks took place in last month, including five suicide bombings, according to official data.
In a bloody incident, a security guard opened fire at Cure International Hospital, run by a US-based Christian charity, killing three American doctors and injuring one US female doctor. The motive behind the attack remained unknown. The attacker was detained.
On April 5, nearly 7 million Afghans cast their votes during the presidential and provincial council elections.
Four civilians, nine policemen and seven soldiers were killed and more than 130 people wounded in Taliban attacks against polling centers on the election day. More than 690 subversive activities and attacks occurred that day. One day before the election, a police officer opened fire on two foreign female journalists of Associated Press, killing one and seriously injuring the other. On April 2, nine civilians, including a provincial council candidate, were shot dead by militants in northern Sari Pul province.
A bloody attack occurred on April 7 when 15 civilians were killed and five others wounded in an improvised explosive device attack in southern Kandahar province.
In March, there were no combat causalities on NATO-led coalition forces. In April, nine NATO soldiers lost their lives in attacks across the country. On April 26, five British soldiers of the coalition were killed following a helicopter crash in Kandahar, 450 km south of Kabul.
At least five targeted killings occurred in different provinces last month, claiming the lives of several government officials and local leaders.
On April 2, six policemen were killed and four others wounded in a Taliban suicide attack on the Interior Ministry.
Local analysts feared that the Taliban would continue their attacks across the country as the Afghan army and police took the lead in combat operations. More than 52,000 NATO-led foreign troops, down from the peak of 130,000 in 2010, are being deployed in Afghanistan. Most of the foreign forces are due to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of the year. The exact number of casualties on the Afghan army and police last month remained unknown. 

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Aaj Kal