Taliban kill 17 captured Afghan soldiers

Taliban militants killed 17 Afghan soldiers in the far northeast in one of the deadliest single attacks on government security forces in recent years, officials said Wednesday.

The men were taken hostage in Badakhshan on Saturday while guarding a convoy. Their bodies were discovered by local people in the relatively peaceful mountainous province, which borders China, Pakistan and Tajikistan.

"The enemy have executed 17 soldiers whose bodies were found last night," provincial deputy police chief Sayed Jahangir Keramat said. "Seven other soldiers were released in exchange for some Taliban prisoners."

Afghan government forces have increasingly suffered the brunt of insurgent attacks as they prepare to take responsibility for national security when the bulk of NATO combat troops withdraw next year.

The attack in Badakhshan will heighten concern that Afghan forces cannot provide security across the country, where a US-led invasion ousted the Taliban regime in 2001.

"Last night locals found 17 bullet-riddled bodies of Afghan soldiers in Warduj district," Abdul Marouf Rasekh, spokesman for the provincial governor, told AFP, confirming several others had been released after talks conducted by tribal elders.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack but said the deaths had occurred during fighting, rather than after the soldiers had been captured.

"The soldiers were all killed in the battlefield," Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said in a statement sent to AFP.

"A huge amount of munitions and two vehicles were also seized," he added.

When the 100,000-strong international military coalition fighting alongside Afghan forces withdraws by the end of next year, the ability of local troops to control the insurgents is key to the country's stability.

General James Mattis, head of US Central Command, on Tuesday insisted Afghan forces were increasingly capable and that the Kabul government's army and police were now leading anti-insurgency efforts.

"There can be no longer any doubt -- it's not opinion. It's now a fact -- the Afghans are doing the bulk of the fighting," he told a hearing in Washington.

President Hamid Karzai on Wednesday made a rare public criticism of national security personnel during a speech at the opening of a new session of parliament.

"While I fight everyday, without any exception, with the foreigners for the human rights of the Afghan people... we learn that our own security forces violate the rights of the Afghan people," he said. "This is unforgivable."

A UN investigation earlier this year found evidence of torture being used by police and the intelligence agencies in Afghan prisons.

The government at first rejected the report but later confirmed some of its findings.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Lupita Nyong'o's $150,000 Oscars dress stolen from hotel
    Lupita Nyong'o's $150,000 Oscars dress stolen from hotel

    The $150,000 pearl-studded, custom-made Calvin Klein dress worn by Oscar-winning actress Lupita Nyong'o at this year's Academy Awards has been stolen, police said on Thursday. The gown, embellished with 6,000 natural white pearls, was stolen from Nyong'o's room at the London Hotel in West Hollywood, during the day on Wednesday, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department in West Hollywood said. "Ms Nyong'o was not in the room at the time of the theft," Deputy John Mitchell …

  • US-led strikes on IS after group seizes 220 Christians
    US-led strikes on IS after group seizes 220 Christians

    The US-led coalition has carried out air strikes against the Islamic State group in northeastern Syria, where the jihadists have launched a new offensive and kidnapped 220 Assyrian Christians. The raids on Thursday struck areas around the town of Tal Tamr in Hasakeh province, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, without giving information on possible casualties. The town remains under the control of Kurdish forces, but at least 10 surrounding villages have been seized by IS, along …

  • Militants abduct more Christians, smash ancient artifacts
    Militants abduct more Christians, smash ancient artifacts

    BEIRUT (AP) — Islamic State militants seized more Christians from their homes in northeastern Syria in the past three days, bringing the total number abducted by the extremist group to over 220, activists said Thursday. …

  • 3 Pinays on Forbes power women list
    3 Pinays on Forbes power women list

    Three Filipina executives, who are all daughters of known business tycoons in the country, made it to Forbes’ list of the 50 most powerful businesswomen in Asia. Teresita Sy-Coson, vice chairman of SM Investments and chairman of BDO Universal Bank, was included in the list for the fourth year in a row since its inception. “Under her (Sy-Coson) lead SMIC became the largest listed company on the Philippine Stock Exchange by market cap. Also in the 2015 list is 70-year-old Helen Yuchengco-Dee, …

  • 13 of 15 SAF survivors to leave PNP hospital
    13 of 15 SAF survivors to leave PNP hospital

    Thirteen of the 15 Special Action Force (SAF) policemen who survived the bloody firefight with Muslim rebels in Mamasapano last month are ready to go home after a month of medical treatment, a police official said yesterday. Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesman Chief Superintendent Generoso Cerbo Jr. said the two remaining survivors will have to stay in hospital for further treatment, one of whom has shrapnel embedded near his spine. One of the two SAF commando survivors is still …

  • US sends spy plane to patrol disputed sea
    US sends spy plane to patrol disputed sea

    The United States has deployed its newest and most advanced surveillance aircraft for patrols over the West Philippine Sea and South China Sea. The P-8A Poseidon aircraft completed more than 180 flight hours from Feb. 1 to 21 from Clark Air Base, according to the US Navy’s 7th Fleet. …

  • Review: SKK Mobile V2, a P3,999 watered-down LG G2
    Review: SKK Mobile V2, a P3,999 watered-down LG G2

    How well does this P3,999 offering from an underdog in the local mobile industry stack up against the competition? Let's find out. …

  • No coercion, force in sea row – France
    No coercion, force in sea row – France

    France renewed its call for a peaceful resolution of the West Philippine Sea dispute during a meeting between its leader President Francois Hollande and President Aquino at Malacañang. “We reiterated the importance of maintaining peace and stability in Southeast Asia and promoting maritime security, freedom of navigation and the peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with international law, including UNCLOS (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea),” Aquino said in a statement …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options