Heavy fighting is under way in parts of the northern city of Kunduz between Taliban fighters and Afghan forces, as the Taliban retook some areas they lost overnight, our correspondent says. “Fighting is going on since early morning and Taliban have claimed they have gained some parts of the city they had lost last night,” Al Jazeera’s Qais Azimy, reporting from Puli Khumri, about 100km from Kunduz, said on Thursday. Aljazeera was there:
“They [Taliban] said they had left the centre of the city because of heavy bombardment by Nato forces and now they are trying to get it back. Many of them have taken shelter in residential areas around the city,” he said. “The fighting seems to have spread to neighbouring province of Takhar and Baghlan. We are getting reports of Taliban taking control of a district in Baghlan province,” Azimy said.
Government troops backed by NATO forces and US air strikes had taken control of parts of Kunduz on Wednesday three days after the Taliban captured the northern city. At least 50 people, mostly civilians, have been killed and more than 300 others injured in the battle, sources told Al Jazeera.
“The Afghan government is putting pressure on security forces to regain areas they lost but it is a big challenge as Taliban have claimed to have established their government. They have appointed a governor and police chief. “One Taliban commander from the area told me that they are ready to fight and not planning to leave the area.”