Scores of armed insurgents have launched a massive attack on Keshk-e-Kohna district of western Herat, taking control of five villages, according to provincial officials.
The coordinated attack carried out Friday morning from three parts of the district has also resulted in collapse of four police posts, the district governor told TOLOnews.
Militants from Badghis, Herat and Faryab provinces have taken part in the attack they were planning for more than a month, he added.
Meanwhile, the provincial council members warned if the security forces fail to push the insurgents back from the five villages currently under their control, the entire district would likely fall into Taliban hands.
"We had already raised our concerns about the Taliban threats to the local security officials of Herat," Provincial Council member Abdul Rasool Jamshedi said. "Today, they [Taliban] attacked the district, took control of five villages and fighting is still underway."
Confirming the attack, the ANA 207 Zafar Corps commander, Gen. Taj Mohammad Jahid, said reinforcement troops including the Special Force members have been deployed to the area.
He said the Afghan National Army (ANA) forces have launched air strikes against the Taliban hideouts, killing several insurgents.
"Special Forces and the helicopters have been deployed to the area, and I can assure you that our forces are able to defend our soil," Gen Jahid noted.
But spokesman of Herat's governor rejected as baseless claims that Taliban took over the control of five villages.
In addition to the ANA forces, he noted hundreds of police forces were also taking part in the operation to the clear the district from the Taliban.
"Claims about collapse of the district into the hands of the Taliban are definitely untrue," Ehsanullah Hayat said. "Forces have been deployed to the area and now the insurgents are fleeing the district."
Keshk-e-Kohna is among the restive districts of Herat and has long experienced constant attacks from the Taliban.