Afghan forces recapture key district in southern Helmand province

ASSOCIATED PRESS

ASSOCIATED PRESS

In a report released Monday, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein called the numbers "horrifying", adding that they "can never fully convey the sheer human suffering of the people of Afghanistan". It also noted that more women and children were among the dead this year. It said 434 civilians were killed during military operations against insurgents. "The army is being very careful during operations to prevent civilian deaths", Waziri told The Associated Press.

Afghan security forces have launched a large-scale operation to re-take Nawa district of Helmand province after the Taliban seized control of the area nine months ago, local officials said Saturday.

It was not possible to independently verify the defence ministry's casualty figure and no comment on insurgent losses was immediately available from the Taliban.

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US military officials said the soldiers had been conducting an operation with partnered Afghan security forces when they came under fire.

Elsewhere in Afghanistan, the Taliban snatched three border police officers from their vehicle in the western Herat province, including a woman, and killed them, said Jelani Farhad, the provincial governor's spokesman.

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