Kabul: Over 600 Taliban terrorists have been killed in Afghanistan's northeastern province of Panjshir, news agency Sputnik reported quoting the Afghan resistance forces on Sunday.
"About 600 Taliban have been liquidated in various districts of Panjshir since morning. More than 1,000 Taliban have been captured or surrendered themselves," the resistance forces' spokesperson Fahim Dashti said in a tweet.
Panjshir 10 minutes ago:
"More than 700 of them was killed, 600 captured & prisoned, the rest are trying to escape, we are in Frontline, everything was planned. We control the whole province. "#AhmadMassoud #Panjshir pic.twitter.com/gsQr8tSGlH
— Northern Alliance (@NA2NRF) September 4, 2021
The spokesperson further added that the Taliban had problems with getting supplies from other Afghan provinces, Sputnik reported. Meanwhile, the Taliban offensive against Panjshir resistance forces has slowed down due to the presence of land mines in the area.
A Taliban source said fighting is continuing in Panjshir but the advance had been slowed by landmines on the road to the capital Bazarak and the provincial governor's compound, reported Al Jazeera.
Panjshir is the stronghold of the National Resistance Front, led by Ahmad Massoud, the son of late ex-Afghan guerrilla commander Ahmad Shah Massoud, and ex-Vice President Amrullah Saleh, who had declared himself caretaker President.
In Panjshir, former Vice-President Amrullah Saleh holed out alongside Ahmad Massoud, admitted the perilous position of the National Resistance Front. "The situation is difficult, we have been under invasion," Saleh earlier said in a video message. "The resistance is continuing and will continue," he added.
Both sides have been claiming to have the upper hand without producing conclusive evidence in Panjshir Valley. The Taliban, which took power in the rest of the country three weeks ago, were never able to control the Valley when they last ruled Afghanistan, from 1996 to 2001.
Taliban spokesman Bilal Karimi said the districts of Khinj and Unabah had been taken, giving Taliban forces control of four of the province’s seven districts. "The Mujahideen (Taliban fighters) are advancing toward the centre (of the province)," he said on Twitter.
But the National Resistance Front of Afghanistan, grouping forces loyal to local leader Ahmad Massoud, said it surrounded "thousands of terrorists" in Khawak pass and the Taliban had abandoned vehicles and equipment in the Dashte Rewak area.
Front spokesman Fahim Dashti added "heavy clashes" were going on. In a Facebook post, Massoud insisted Panjshir "continues to stand strongly". Praising "our honourable sisters", he said demonstrations by women in the western city of Herat calling for their rights showed Afghans had not given up demands for justice and "they fear no threats".
Earlier, a Taliban source said the group`s advance was slowed by landmines placed on the road to the provincial capital, Bazarak. It was not immediately possible to get further independent confirmation of events in Panjshir, which is walled off by mountains except for a narrow entrance.