10 Killed In Clashes At Tajik-Afghan Border

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KABUL — Afghan officials said on Monday a Tajik or Russian air­craft had bombed a northeastern Afghan border district during a clash between gunmen and Ta­jik border guards, but officials in both Tajikistan and Russia denied that they had done so.

The attackers were able to flee and an investigation is underway, added Radmanish.

Also on Monday, two military pilots were shot and killed by un­known gunmen in the capital Ka­bul, according Mohammad Rad­manish, deputy spokesman for the Defence Ministry.

Cross-border clashes are rare on Afghanistan’s border with Ta­jikistan, compared, for example, with fighting along Afghanistan’s eastern border with Pakistan.

The air attack followed a clash between gunmen and Tajik border guards in Durqad district of Takhar province, two Afghan officials said.

Khalil Asir, a spokesman for Takhar provincial police, said eight Taliban were killed and six wounded in the air strike after a clash in which two Tajik border guards were killed.

“It was not clear if it was a Russian or Tajik aircraft,” he said.

Jawed Hejri, spokesman for Takhar provincial governor, also said it was not clear where the air­craft came from but he said the six people killed in the clash with Tajik border forces were drug smugglers.

An Afghan defence ministry spokesman declined to make any immediate comment. A spokes­man for Tajik border guards in Dushanbe said Tajikistan had not carried out any bombing and did not confirm the death of two bor­der guards. However, the official, who declined to be identified, said three Tajik forestry workers had been attacked by intruders from Afghanistan. Two were killed while the third escaped.

Russia said its military air­craft had not conducted any op­erations near Afghanistan’s bor­der with Tajikistan, the RIA news agency cited the defence ministry as saying.

Much of the porous Afghan-Tajik border is in mountains and difficult for

 

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