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Afghan: Anti-Taliban Forces Launch New Attacks North Of Kabul

Kabul, 19 June 1997 (RFE/RL) - Opposition forces today reportedly have launched fresh attacks on the Taliban militia and its allies north of Kabul.

The Pakistan-based news agency the Afghan Islamic Press (AIP) said fighters loyal to former government military chief Ahmad Shah Masood had begun an offensive against Taliban positions on the outskirts of Jabal os-Siraj, about 70 km north of Kabul.

The two sides battled for at least two hours, but there was no word on whether any ground had changed hands in the town, strategically located on the main highway linking the capital of Kabul with the north. It quoted Taliban officials as saying that at least five Taliban fighters had been wounded in the clashes, but there was no word on opposition casualties.

There is no independent confirmation of the report.