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Jul 12, 2018
9:19PM

Taliban kill at least 15 troops, 4 police: Afghan officials

The Taliban struck today in Afghanistan's northern province of Kunduz, leaving 15 soldiers dead there and in western Farah province, where they killed four policemen.  

According to army spokesman Mohammad Hanif Rezaie, who is based in Balkh province, Taliban fighters tried to overrun a military security post in the district of Dasht-e-Arch, using artillery shells.  

Along with the 15 killed, at least 13 soldiers were wounded in the four-hour-long gunbattle.  

However, Mohammad Yosuf Ayubi, the head of the provincial council, said as many as 30 soldiers were killed. The disparate death tolls could not be immediately reconciled.

In the attack in Farah, the Governor's spokesman Mohammad Naser Mehri said the Taliban targeted a police checkpoint.  

The Taliban have not so far claimed either attack but the insurgents have recently stepped up assaults in both provinces and elsewhere in Afghanistan.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has repeatedly extended calls to the Taliban for peace talks but the insurgents have rejected them outright.  

NATO leaders are expected to discuss Afghanistan later today at their summit in Brussels during which the alliance is expected to make a commitment to keep funding the Afghan army and its training mission.

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