Taliban kills 13 Afghan soldiers in Balkh province

Afghan security forces also killed at least two Taliban members in clashes in southeastern Paktia province on Friday.

Taliban has killed 13 members of the Afghan security forces in the northern province of Balkh.

Seventeen others were also wounded when Taliban attacked Zareh district of the province overnight, provincial councillors Sakhi Lala and Mohammad Amin Dara-e Sufi told DPA news agency on Friday.


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On Friday, Afghan security forces also killed at least two Taliban members and wounded three others in Afghanistan’s southeastern Paktia province, Qatar News Agency reported.

A group of Taliban fighters attacked the Afghan army on the outskirts of Gardez, the provincial capital of Paktia, Khaama Press news agency reported, adding that two Taliban members were killed and at least three others were wounded.

The Taliban has recently increased attacks in a number of northern Afghan provinces, despite both the government and the armed group releasing prisoners as per an agreement with the United States, signed in February in Doha.

On Wednesday, the Taliban killed at least nine members of local uprising forces in northern Samangan province, according to officials.

The attacks come as the US watchdog, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, said in its quarterly report on Friday, citing the NATO-led mission Resolute Support, that since the US-Taliban  agreement, the group had refrained from attacks on international forces, but “increased attacks against the Afghan forces to levels above seasonal norms”.

On Thursday, Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani urged the Taliban to accept a ceasefire in respect of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which the Taliban promptly rejected.

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