Three Polish soldiers, over 30 Taliban killed in Afghanistan

Other News Materials 21 August 2008 12:24 (UTC +04:00)

Three Polish soldiers were killed in a roadside attack in southern Afghanistan, while Afghan and coalition forces claimed to have killed more than 30 Taliban militants in the east of the country, officials said Thursday, dpa reported.

The three soldiers were killed in a roadside attack in southern Afghanistan on Wednesday, the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said in a statement.

A Polish military spokesman told TVN24, Polish TV station based in Warsaw, that three of their soldiers were killed and one injured in a mine explosion, 20 kilometres south-east of Ghazni province.

About 1,600 Polish troops are part of 53,000 ISAF forces from 40 countries that have been deployed to Afghanistan following the ouster of the Taliban regime in late 2001.

Meanwhile, Afghan commandos and US-led coalition forces Wednesday killed more than 30 suspected Taliban militants in the eastern province of Laghman, the US military said in a statement.

The operation was conducted after the combined forces received information that the militants had gathered in the area following a recent attack on NATO forces in the same region.

The militants fired at the joint forces as they approached the area, the US statement said, adding, "Approximately 200 civilians were seen fleeing the area, including women and children."

Once the area was clear of civilians, the combined forces killed "more than 30 militants," the statement said. No civilian casualties were reported, it added.

The recent bloodshed came days after 10 French soldiers were killed and 21 were wounded near Kabul in the worst-ever Taliban ambush in the war-shattered country since 2001.

More than 3,000 people - mostly insurgents but also about 1,000 civilians and more than 170 international soldiers - have been killed so far this year.