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Afghan: Opposition Claims It Holds Jabal Siraj, Despite Attacks

Kabul, 12 June 1997 (RFE/RL) - Afghan opposition forces claim they still hold the key town of Jabal Siraj, north of the capital Kabul, despite repeated attacks by Taliban troops.

A spokesman for opposition commander Ahmad Shah Masood reports frequent exchanges of heavy shell-fire near Jabul Siraj but Taliban forces still remain encamped just across the Salang River. There is no independent confirmation of the report.

Spokesman Abdullah said that the Taliban had now lost control of all centers in northern Afghanistan after their retreat two days ago from the town of Pul-i-Khumri. Abdullah said the 3,000-strong Taliban force at Pul-i-Khumri had been disarmed and had moved to the nearby city of Baghlan.