Afghan forces retake district in Helmand from Taliban

A U.S. Navy Corpsman and U.S. soldier take part in a helicopter Medevac exercise in Helmand province Afghanistan

In a New York Times report published July 14, Afghan Army Corps Operations Chief Lt. Col. Abdul Latif raised concerns about whether Afghan National Security Forces would be able to keep control of Nawa if they retook it.

Nawa district, just west of Helmand's capital city and regional police headquarters, Lashkar Gah, was overrun by the Taliban last August, according to multiple media reports.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid rejected the "biased" report, saying it did not take into account civilians killed by Afghan and coalition forces in areas controlled by the Taliban.

The U.N. says Afghanistan's protracted war killed a record number of civilians in the first six months of this year, blaming Taliban insurgents for most of the deaths.

A key district in Afghanistan's Helmand province that was taken by insurgents previous year is now back under Afghan army control, U.S. Marines deployed to Helmand announced Monday.

Zwak further added that the foreign forces based in Afghanistan are also providing support to the Afghan security forces, mainly providing air support.

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The resurgent Taliban have made it a stated goal to seize a major population city.

The roughly 300 Marine task force aided in the operation to clear Nawa district.

As part of an expeditionary advising package, Marines with Task Force Southwest are advising ANDSF to improve command and control, battle tracking, intelligence, maneuver, fires integration, and leadership evaluation and development.

Nicholson has requested an increase in troop numbers in Afghanistan by several thousand to boost the effectiveness of these expeditionary advising packages. It also noted that more women and children were among the dead this year.

Afghan police Lt. Col. Mohammad Omar said the USA air support was an important part of the operation.

The officers were driving to their office in the district of Kushk in Herat province when they were ambushed by Taliban, dragged from their vehicle and shot, said Farhad. "Something that they never had in the past fighting with the enemies". "Defeating the enemy in Nawa means defeating the enemy in Helmand".

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