Tuesday, October 2, 2001, Chandigarh, India





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Taliban recaptures key area
Agrees to share power in three provinces

Islamabad, October 1
Taliban fighters today recaptured a key area of western Afghanistan lost to opposition forces at the weekend and increased their ranks with the defection of around 60 Northern Alliance fighters, the Afghan Islamic Press (AIP) said.

Meanwhile, the Taliban militia has agreed to share power with tribal elders in three southeastern provinces to counter growing support for former King Mohammad Zahir Shah, a report said today.

“Tribal elders and jehadi commanders or their representatives will be included in the government machinery,” a senior Taliban official, Rehmad Wahid Yar, told the Pakistan-based Afghan Islamic Press (AIP).

The Taliban official said the provinces where power-sharing was agreed were Paktika, Paktia and Khost.

Earlier, Taliban fighters launched a pre-dawn attack and wrested back Qadis district in Badghis province after three hours of fighting, AIP said.

Two Taliban fighters and three opposition soldiers were killed in the fighting, the report said, adding that the Taliban forces had also captured six prisoners.

No independent confirmation of the report was available.

Afghanistan leadership had started amassing troops equipped with Stinger and other missiles along the Pakistan to target US war-planes flying into Afghanistan borders said a newspaper.

KUPLETIN (Tajikistan): The Taliban militia fired automatic weapons at a Russian border post on the Afghan-Tajik frontier on Monday, hitting the building in which border guards and Western reporters were standing but causing no casualties.

Two bursts were fired at the border post at Kupletin, 260 km southwest of the Tajik capital Dushanbe, from a range of about 600 metres. Agencies
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