ANA OperationForty militants have been killed and wounded during military‘s Operation Badar in restive Zabul province.

Operation Badar started in Khak-i-Afghan, Atghar, Sewri, Daichopan and Shah Joy districts five days before.

General Sayed Waqif Shah from 205th Atal Corps in the South says that the main purpose of this operation is to secure the release of the 31 abductees and prevent the arrival of foreign militants to this province.

“Including foreigners 20 militants have been killed and 19 others wounded in the operation so far” he said. “17 others including four militant commanders have been arrested” Waqif Shah added.

Military operations were conducted in the past to secure the release of 31 civilians abducted over two months but winded up with a positive result.

But Waqif Shah says that the difference between Operation Badar with those conducted before is that Afghan Special Forces are playing key role in this operation.

The 31 members of the minority Shiite Hazara community were abducted on Kabul-Kandahar highway from the jurisdiction of Zabul province on February 24. Afghan government has not yet officially released information about their fate.