In multiple coordinated operations against the Taliban during the last 24 hours in different parts of the country, Afghan forces killed 51 fighters that signals renewed deadlock in the ongoing peace talks.
According to the Defense Ministry of Afghanistan, the government forces conducted several ground attacks and airstrikes in nine provinces, as a result of which 51 terrorists were killed, 13 wounded and six more arrested.
Local officials in Balkh province said that at least seven civilians lost their lives in airstrikes including three women and four children, which led people to promote new waves of demonstration in front of the provincial governor’s office.
Meanwhile, the government pledged to send a fact-finding team to investigate the reports of civilian deaths and avoid making the same mistake in the future.
On the other hand, Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said in a statement, “Ten Afghan security forces were killed and three wounded, and Taliban fighters have captured a large weapons cache.”
Launch of new attacks and killings come as the US, and Taliban negotiators in Doha take a two-day break for consultations about how to overcome recent hurdles in the talks, a source close to the peace process.
Zalmay Khalilzad, US Special Representative in Afghanistan peace talks and reconsolidation process, has repeatedly been meeting with the Taliban’s chief negotiator Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar in Doha.
Meanwhile, sources close to the talks said the Taliban agreed to stop attacking American forces and reduce the level of violence against the Afghan government and civilians.