5 militants killed in N. Afghanistan

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KUNDUZ, Afghanistan, March 19 (Xinhua) — Afghan forces during operations against militants in the northern Kunduz province, 250 km north of Kabul, have killed a Taliban key commander Mullah Shirin Agha along with four others, police said Wednesday.

“Security forces launched an operation against rebels in Chardara district late Tuesday night which led to the killing of five rebels including Taliban notorious commander Mullah Shirin Agha early Wednesday morning,” deputy provincial police chief Abadullah Talwar told newsmen here.

He also said that Shirin Agha was involved in anti-government activities over the past few years and his elimination is a major blow to the Taliban militants.

The police official also admitted that one police constable was killed and two others injured in the conflict which lasted for few hours.

Meanwhile, Zabihullah Mujahid who claims to speak for the Taliban fighters in talks with media via telephone from unknown location confirmed the clash and the death of Mullah Shirin Agha, but insisted eight police were also killed in the fight.

Taliban militants fighting to regain power in Afghanistan have intensified their activities since the beginning of this year.

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