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Taliban admit ‘heavy casualties’ on both sides in clashes with Panjshir resistance

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The Taliban admitted on Wednesday that there were casualties on both sides of the conflict with Ahmad Massoud’s resistance movement in Panjshir province.

The Taliban “have been attacked by those who choose to resist in Panjshir,” said Inamullah Samangani, a member of the Taliban's cultural committee, adding: “The attack was met with backlash from [Taliban fighters], which resulted in heavy causalities on both sides.”

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Afghan news outlet ToloNews reported that heavy clashes between the Taliban and the resistance movement started Tuesday night and that locals are fleeing their homes.

A Taliban official, Amir Khan Mottaki, said talks with the resistance have broken down and yielded no results.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Massoud’s resistance movement, Fahim Dashti, said the Taliban attacked from three directions over the last two nights but without achieving any progress.

“More than a dozen Taliban [fighters] have been killed and more than seven others wounded,” ToloNews quoted him as saying.

After the Taliban seized control of Afghanistan on August 15, Panjshir province in the country’s northwest remained an unconquered area. It has become a stronghold for resistance, mobilizing under Ahmad Massoud, the 32-year-old son of the slain leader Ahmad Shah Massoud, who vowed to resist the Taliban.

The Taliban had announced two weeks ago that hundreds of their fighters were heading to Panjshir to control the province.

Read more:

Panjshir resistance says retaliated against Taliban attack, killed 7 of its fighters

Taliban claim to enter resistance stronghold Panjshir, Massoud supporters deny

Afghanistan's Panjshir Valley: Home of the anti-Taliban resistance