11 Aug 2009

Police HQ attacked by Taliban

7:06 am on 11 August 2009

Taliban fighters have attacked official buildings in eastern Afghanistan, firing rockets at a police headquarters and government offices.

Five Afghan police were reportedly killed and 26 others wounded on Monday as six gunmen fired grenades inside Pul-i-Alam. The city is the capital of Logar province - 70kms from Kabul.

A highway linking Kabul to provinces in the southeast was closed because of the fighting.

Nationwide elections are due to be held in Afghanistan on 20 August. The Taliban has vowed to disrupt the elections and has stepped up attacks in recent weeks.

Meanwhile, the commander of NATO forces in Afghanistan says Taliban fighters are moving beyond their usual strongholds in the south to more stable areas in the north and west.

General Stanley McChrystal says troops will be moved from sparsely populated areas to more urban locations to protect civilians.

He says 4000 United States troops will also be sent to Kandahar in the south.

General McChrystal warns casualties among international forces in Afghanistan will remain high for months to come.