Kabul: After days of bitter fighting with Taliban militants, the Afghan forces wrested the control of strategic northern town of Kunduz on Thursday, said afghan officials.
The details of the counter offensive launched by the Afghan forces are yet to emerged fully. It is still not clear that which areas of the densely populated Afghan city have been recaptured by government forces.
A Taliban spokesperson, however, denied that the government had retaken Kunduz, saying insurgent fighters were still resisting government forces in the centre and controlled most of the city.
Afghan forces, backed by US air strikes, have been struggling for two days to retake the city after it became the first provincial capital to fall to the Taliban since 2001.
“Afghan security forces got control of Kunduz city from Taliban overnight after heavy fighting,” Hamdullah Danishi, acting governor of Kunduz province, told Reuters by telephone.
“After we got reinforcements and started a massive operation inside Kunduz city, the Taliban could not resist and escaped. We will give a full report soon,” he added.
Dawlat Waziri, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Defence, said the counter-offensive started at 11pm on Wednesday and finished at 4 am on Thursday.
“Right now, the Taliban have left Kunduz city. A clearance operation is ongoing,” Waziri said.
However, Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid, said the fighting was continuing.