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Afghan Officials Say More Than 200 Troops Killed In Helmand

Afghan National Army commandos load ammunition into their rifle magazines during an ongoing battle between Taliban militants and Afghan security forces in Helmand Province on October 10.

Afghan officials say hundreds of members of the Afghanistan's security forces have been killed in recent fighting against Taliban militants in and around Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand Province.

Abdul Majeed Akhonzada, deputy head of Helmand's provincial council, and Helmand's lawmaker in the upper chamber of the Afghan parliament, Sheer Muhammad Akhon, said on October 14 that the number of soldiers and police killed during the previous 10 days was more than 200.

Akhonzada also told RFE/RL that more than 100 Afghan troops were killed on October 11 in a single battle while trying to retreat to Lashkar Gah from a besieged outpost at Cha-e Anjir, about 10 kilometers from the provincial capital.

Akhonzada and Akhon also said 45 civilians had also been killed, and more than 100 members of the security forces had been wounded.

Akhonzada and Akhon say Helmand Province is facing its worst security situation since the Taliban regime was ousted nearly 15 years ago by the 2001 U.S.-led invasion.

Taliban fighters now control most of the province and have surrounded Lashkar Gah.

With reporting by Reuters and AP