Taliban overrun district near Afghan capital

By Shadi Khan Saif
KABUL, Afghanistan (AA) – Taliban rebels in Afghanistan have overrun a district at around 50 kilometers (31 miles) from the capital Kabul, officials and local media confirmed on Sunday.
Sharifullah Hotak, member of the provincial council, told Anadolu Agency that hundreds of the rebels stormed the Sayed Abad district in the Maidan Wardak province late on Saturday. He confirmed that the district police chief, Col. Syed Nazrab Shah, were killed along with his guards.
The main Kabul – Kandahar highway remained closed for hours following the rebels’ coordinated assaults on three checkposts, he added.
In a separate development, at least 10 civilians were killed in an air raid by the security forces in the eastern Paktia province.
The spokesman for the Paktia police headquarters, Naseem Khan, confirmed the incident, but added that a fact-finding mission was sent to the area.
The local Ashna Radio said at least 10 civilians were killed in this raid.
Following a string of such airstrikes, the UN expressed serious concerns last month.
According to the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, 353 civilian casualties (149 deaths and 204 injured) were documented in the first six months of 2018 from aerial attacks, a 52 percent increase from 2017.