Assault on Jail in Afghanistan Sets Over 300 Taliban Inmates Free

Afghan security forces walk past the body of an alleged Taliban insurgent after an attack on a jail complex that freed more than 350 prisoners. (Rahmatullah Alizadah/AFP/Getty Images)
Afghan security forces walk past the body of an alleged Taliban insurgent after an attack on a jail complex that freed more than 350 prisoners. (Rahmatullah Alizadah/AFP/Getty Images)

Heavily armed Taliban fighters wearing military uniforms stormed a major prison Monday, battling security forces and freeing more than 350 inmates and fellow insurgents in a bold attack amid an apparent leadership struggle within the militant group.

The commando-style strike — beginning with the truck bomb blast at the prison entrance — marked one of the largest Taliban operations since the July acknowledgment of the death of insurgents’ reclusive leader, Mohammad Omar.

The announcement led to reports of infighting among the militants over Omar’s successor and whether to resume peace talks with the government in Kabul.

But the latest attack suggests that factions within the Taliban have maintained enough unity and organization to carry out large-scale assaults.

Afghanistan’s Interior Ministry said 355 prisoners — 148 of them considered militants — managed to flee the mud-walled complex in Ghanzi province, a volatile region about 75 miles southwest of Kabul.

At least four police and several insurgents were killed in a gun battle that lasted for several hours, according to Mohammad Ali Ahmadi, Ghaniz’s deputy governor. Several prisoners were wounded in the clashes, he said.

At least two Taliban suicide bombers were among those killed, officials said, and several escapees were recaptured.

Click here to continue reading…

SOURCE: Sayed Salahuddin and Peter Holley
The Washington Post

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s