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Two policemen killed as Taliban attack village – Badakhshan

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(Last Updated On: June 11, 2020)

At least two policemen were killed and one other was wounded in clashes with the Taliban militants in Badakhshan province, a local official confirmed.

Sanaullah Rohani, a spokesman for the provincial police told Ariana News that the clashes broke out after the insurgents attack the Ghaniwi village in the Warduj district of Badakhshan. The militants attacked the village at around p.m. Wednesday and continued until Thursday morning, Rohani said.

According to him, at least three Taliban fighters were killed and six others wounded as back-up troops deployed in the area.

The Taliban militant group yet to make a comment on the matter.

Badakhshan is among the insecure provinces of the country where the Taliban, Daesh, and Al-Qaida groups are actively operating in a number of its district.

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Taliban truck bomb kills 2, wounds 15 in Kandahar

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(Last Updated On: July 8, 2020)

At least two police were killed and 15 others wounded in a car bomb explosion in southern Kandahar province, a source confirmed.

A security source on a condition of anonymity told Ariana News that an explosive-laden truck targeted the police headquarters building of Shahwalikot district of the province early Wednesday morning.

The incident took place at around 4 a.m. Wednesday, Shahwalikot residents say that casualties might increase.

Meanwhile, the Taliban militant group claimed responsibility for the attack.

The group further claimed that at least 20 soldiers including the district’s police chief were killed in the blast. 

Separately in Ghazni, the district police chief for Deh Yak, Habibullah, was killed in a roadside mine blast at around 4:30 early Wednesday.

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China, Afghanistan, Pakistan seek ‘orderly’ foreign troop exit

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(Last Updated On: July 8, 2020)

Afghanistan, China, and Pakistan have called for a responsible withdrawal of US-led coalition forces from Afghanistan in order to prevent what they say is a potential “terrorist resurgence” in Afghanistan.

Following the China-Afghanistan-Pakistan Trilateral Vice Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue, Afghan, Chinese and Pakistani foreign ministry officials issued a statement and said the “three sides agreed to continue to strengthen counter-terrorism and security cooperation, combat the East Turkistan Islamic Movement, and all other terrorist forces and networks posing threats to our common security.”

The third round of talks was co-chaired by Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Luo Zhaohui, Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister Mirwais Nab, and Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood.

Discussions not only centered on security issues but also on matters around the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the statement, the three sides agreed to further the cooperation against COVID-19, to call on the international community to jointly prevent discrimination and stigma, to support the World Health Organization’s leading role in coordinating global COVID-19 response, to promote international cooperation on joint prevention and control, and to safeguard public health security in the region and beyond.

The statement also indicated that China and Pakistan “appreciated the efforts by the Afghanistan government and relevant parties in expediting the exchange of the (Taliban) prisoners to pave the way for the start of the Intra-Afghan Negotiations and call for violence reduction and humanitarian ceasefire.

“China and Pakistan will enhance cooperation with the Afghan government in support of the Afghan-led, Afghan-owned peace reconciliation process, the launch of Intra-Afghan Negotiations at an early date, the preservation of the gains since 2001, and (China and Pakistan) looked forward to the early restoration of peace and stability in Afghanistan,” read the statement.

It was also noted that China will continue to play a constructive role in improving Afghanistan-Pakistan relations.

On the issue of troop withdrawal, the three sides “urged for an orderly, responsible and condition-based withdrawal of the foreign troops from Afghanistan to avoid potential terrorist resurgence.”

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Top US general ‘not convinced’ troops killed for Russian bounty

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(Last Updated On: July 8, 2020)

A top US general said intelligence suggesting Russia paid bounties to the Taliban to kill American troops in Afghanistan was a matter of concern but said he was not convinced this had resulted in the death of any US military personnel.

This comes after the Washington Post reported late last month that alleged Russian bounties offered to Taliban-linked militants to kill coalition forces in Afghanistan reportedly resulted in the deaths of several US military members over the past few months.

According to the Washington Post, the intelligence emerged following US military interrogations of captured militants in recent months.

However, the Pentagon has subsequently said it had “no corroborating evidence” to validate the allegations. Moscow has also denied any truth in the allegations.

On Tuesday, the head of US Central Command, General Frank McKenzie, told reporters that the US has not increased force protection measures in Afghanistan as a result of the information but said he has asked his intelligence staff to investigate the matter.

“I sent the intelligence guys back to continue to dig on it. And I believe they’re continuing to dig right now,” he said.

“I’m very familiar with this material and I’m a theatre commander and I’ve had an opportunity to look at it. I found it very worrisome. I just didn’t find that there was a causative link there,” McKenzie said.

He said however, that Russia has long been a threat in Afghanistan. McKenzie said that the Russians were “not our friends in Afghanistan and they do not wish us well.”

The US has in the past accused Russia of possibly providing support, including weapons, to elements of the Taliban. Russia has however always denied having supported the insurgents.

But McKenzie said that whether the Russians were paying them or not, “the Taliban have done their level best to carry out operations against us.”

US forces in Afghanistan suffered a total of 10 deaths from hostile gunfire or improvised bombs in 2018, and 16 in 2019. Two have been killed this year.

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