by Shams Jalal
Pajhwok Afghan News
Feb. 12, 2014
LASHKARGAH (Pajhwok): The Taliban are running training camps in districts near the Pakistan border in southern Helmand province, police claimed on Wednesday.
They said Taliban’s training camps and hideouts of drug smugglers were operational in Deshu and Khanshin districts.
Col. Abdul Ahmad Ahmadi, the sixth border police zone deputy commander, told reporters the rebels had established training centres in the Behramcha area of Deshu district.
He said militants trained in the camps sneaked into interior Helmand, Nimroz, Farah and other provinces.
Drug smugglers have established heroin processing factories in border areas, he said, adding the smugglers assisted by insurgents encouraged farmers to grow poppy crops in their fields.
Ahmadi said a major operation had been launched to drive the rebels and the smugglers from the border region and dismantle their camps and hideouts.
He added the operation was aimed at improving security ahead of the April elections. So far four militants have been killed and two others arrested with some weapons and ammunition, he said, adding security forces remained unharmed.
A Taliban spokesman Qari Yusuf Ahmadi claimed six Afghan security personnel had been killed and their two armoured vehicles destroyed during the operation in Deshu, situated in the southern part of Helmand.