Afghan Update 20160823 – Big fights ongoing in several Afghan provinces to include Kunduz, Helmand, and Baghlan provinces. NUG government not getting along. Summer Campaign 2016 resulting in heavy seasonal fighting.
The Taliban are on the move in several locations in Afghanistan this fighting season – called ‘Summer Campaign 2016’ by NATO. Some trouble spots of note include Kunduz, Baghlan, Helmand, and Uruzgan provinces.
Kunduz. There is the threat that Kunduz city may fall once again to insurgents; although if this happens the government will likely rush a few ANASOC Special Operations Kandaks (SOKs) and MoI special police units to the city to re-capture it . . . as it did this past fall. At least three districts in Baghlan province have fallen to the Taliban in recent weeks. Khan Abad district was the latest to fall although some news reports say it was recaptured by govt forces.
Baghlan. Read a recent news report (Tolo News, Aug 22, 2016) about Afghan SOF attacking a Taliban target near Pul-e-Khumri – the capital of Baghlan province.
Helmand. The insurgents have been extremely active in Helmand province. The capital of Helmand province is nearly surrounded – many of the districts controlled by insurgents. The Helmand – Kandahar road is blocked by Taliban checkpoints and mines and is not open for traffic. Some reports say that the provincial capital – Lashkar Gar – is at risk.
Uruzgan. Security in Uruzgan has spiraled downhill in the last year. The United States continues its daily use of airstrikes to support the Afghan security forces – in attempt to prevent big failures (such as the loss of a provincial capital or district center).
NUG Not Getting Along. CEO Abdullah and President Ghani are having a rough patch in their relationship. This, of course, has a negative ripple effect across all governmental ministries and agencies.