Taliban fighters launched an assault on the provincial capital of Ghazni beginning around 02:00 (local time) on Friday, August 10. A Taliban spokesman announced the group had seized multiple police districts and the city's military base. The claims were rejected by the Ghazni governor spokesman, who did concede that fighting was ongoing near the governor's office and police headquarters. Local Ghazni security forces denied that Taliban fighters had entered the city and that clashes were ongoing in the city outskirts of Khogyani, Khwaja Omari, and Zanakhan as of 08:30.
The Ring Road, which links Kandahar to Kabul, was also reportedly blocked by Taliban forces between Ghazni and Kandahar.
This is the second major Afghan city to be attacked this year, following a May 2018 assault on Farah. The Taliban also previously assaulted Kunduz in 2015 and 2016. Ghazni is situated on the Ring Road, the overland route that links Kabul to Kandahar, the country's second largest city.
The security environment in Afghanistan remains complex. Although travel is permissible in some areas, other areas should be considered strictly off limits. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.
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