Ghazni District Retaken After Deadly Attack

Ali Dost Shams, the governor, was among those killed in the crossfire, along with his bodyguards and several intelligence agents.

In a separate incident north of Kabul, a "sticky" bomb destroyed an oil tanker outside the Bagram military base, where USA forces are stationed.

The United Nations' Afghanistan assistance mission is urging warring factions in the country to protect civilians, saying the civilian death toll in the first three months of this year is a staggering 763 people.

Taliban guerrillas attacked a district headquarters in Afghanistan's Ghazni province on Thursday, killing its administrator along with at least 14 others, officials said.

Meanwhile, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the rebels overran Khwaja Omari and killed several security officials, including the district chief.

His claim could not be independently confirmed and the government did not immediately respond to it. At least 45 to 50 militants were killed, he said.

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A politician in the Afghan parliament, Mohammad Arif Rahmani, said the district governor, intelligence service director and a deputy police official were among those killed in Thursday's attack.

Herat provincial governor spokesman Jailani Farhad said that two armoured Humvees were destroyed in the attack in Shindand district, adding the Taliban also seized weapons and ammunition during the raid.

Ground engagements between militants and security forces accounted for 30 percent of civilian casualties in the January to March period.

According to Associated Press, the blistering attack in the Khwaja Omari district was the latest insurgent assault in Ghazni province. He said the fighting began about 2 a.m. with the Taliban storming the highly secure compound in Khuja Omari district.

An Afghan security forces member walks through the site of a bomb explosion in Shindand district of Herat Province on April 10, 2018.

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