Afghan district governor killed in Taliban ambush
Taliban insurgents gunned down Abdul Majeed, the governor for the province's Baghran district.india Updated: Apr 15, 2006 14:55 IST
Taliban insurgents gunned down an Afghan district governor in troubled southern Afghanistan on Saturday in an ambush in insurgency-hit Helmand province, police said.
Abdul Majeed, the governor for the province's Baghran district, was killed in his car, district police chief Bahaudin Khan told the agency.
"Our district governor was martyred today," he said.
A Taliban spokesman, Yousuf Ahmadi, said by telephone the movement was responsible for the attack.
He claimed seven police were also killed but this was rejected by Khan.
Helmand is one of Afghanistan's most violent provinces and suffers regular attacks by Taliban militants said to be linked to the drugs trade.
It is expecting a force of about 3,500 British soldiers to be in place by mid-June, with about 1,000 already in the country.
They will take part in counterinsurgency and counter-narcotics operations.
Several of the province's officials have been assassinated in the past weeks.
The Islamist Taliban movement was in government until 2001 when it was toppled in a US-led offensive after it refused to hand over Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden for the September 11, 2001 attacks on Washington and New York.
Since then remnants of the Taliban and other Islamic militants, including those from bin Laden's Al-Qaeda network, have been waging a bloody guerrilla-style insurgency targeted mainly at government and foreign troops.
The Taliban have vowed an increased spring offensive against Afghan and foreign forces this year.