Notice that these attacks are in Western Afghanistan not the south or east where most of the violence usually occurs. Official pronouncements about numbers of Taliban killed are always suspect. Note that the kills are after U.S. air bombardment. This practice is bound to produce collateral damage that is a great recruitment boon for the Taliban. The Taliban seem to be learning to spin the news from the occupiers According to the Taliban those killed were all innocent civilians! This is from AFP.
45 killed in fresh Afghan violence
Mon Jun 30, 9:02 AM ET
US-led air strikes and Afghan ground troops killed 33 Taliban rebels in western Afghanistan, while four civilians were killed in bomb blasts elsewhere, officials said Monday.
The coalition said "numerous" militants were killed on Sunday during an operation in Nimroz province targeting a Taliban leader involved in bomb attacks but did not give further details.
Insurgents attacked a police post in Khash Rod district of Nimroz late Sunday, leaving five Taliban dead in the clash that broke out immediately afterwards, provincial police chief Mohammad Ayob Badakhshi told AFP.
After the incident the militants massed with other insurgents in the same district, where they were bombed by US-led coalition aircraft, provincial governor Ghulam Dastageer Azad told AFP.
"In the aerial bombing by the US troops 28 Taliban were killed and many others were wounded. The dead include three Taliban commanders," Azad said.
The Afghan interior ministry however put the death toll at 15.
The governor said locals had told him that eight civilians were also killed near the bombing area but he could not confirm the information.
A coalition statement said it killed "numerous" armed militants using small-arms fire and air strikes in an operation on Sunday targeting a Taliban leader known to facilitate bomb attacks, but did not give figures.
A Taliban spokesman, Yousuf Ahmadi, said that none of its fighters were killed in the bombing and that all those who died were civilians. Many of his previous claims have proved to be exaggerated.
"They killed 22 people and they were all civilians who had gathered in open due to hot weather for a ceremony. None of them were Taliban," Ahmadi said in a telephone call.
Meanwhile a mother and three of her sons died when a bomb the men were allegedly constructing exploded in their home in Wardak province, just south of the capital Kabul, district chief Enaytullah Mangal told AFP.
A teenage girl, apparently the sister of the suspected insurgents, was wounded.
"Our investigation showed that they were constructing a bomb to be later used in terrorist attacks. The bomb exploded and killed three brothers and their mother," Mangal said.
The district chief said that one of the brothers, an engineer, was recently freed from a jail where he was held for several months over suspected links with Taliban militants.
Hundreds of Afghan security forces backed by NATO-led troops launched an operation in several districts in Wardak at the weekend to root out Taliban insurgents who have increased attacks in recent weeks.
Three US-led soldiers were killed in a bomb explosion there on Friday.
Separately four civilians were killed and two police were wounded in three roadside bomb blasts Monday in Zurmat district of eastern Paktia province, spokesman for provincial governor Rohullah Samoon said.
In a similar incident an army vehicle was struck by a roadside bomb on Sunday in the same district killing two Afghan soldiers, the defense ministry said.
Another two militants were killed Sunday in a firefight in the Marja district of troubled Helmand province, the ministry said.
The Taliban was ousted from power in late 2001 by a US-led invasion and has since launched a bloody insurgency which has claimed thousands of lives.
Copyright © 2008 Agence France Presse. All rights reserved.