At least 250 Afghan security force members were killed and over 300 others injured in 220 attacks carried out by the Taliban in the past three weeks in the 11 provinces of the country, a media report said.
The TOLO News report indicated that the majority of casualties among the government forces occurred in the north and southeast regions of the country.
The Afghan government has not provided details on the exact number, but has insisted that the Taliban’s casualties “are double” than that of the security forces.
Under the US-Taliban peace agreement which was signed in Doha on February 29, the Taliban committed to not stage attacks on the key highways and provincial capitals.
However, over the recent days, Zabul-Kandahar, Baghlan-Samangan and Kabul-Nangarhar highways have witnessed massive attacks, said the TOLO News report.
Of the 11 provinces, Kunduz has witnessed heavy clashes.
Three days ago, a key member of the Talibans political office in Doha has blamed the Afghan government for delays in the peace negotiations between the two sides which are aimed at ending the decades-long war in the country.
The talks were expected to begin 10 days after the February 29 deal between the US and the Taliban, but it is dependent on the completion of a prisoner exchange by the Afghan government and the militant group.
The recent wave of violence have also led to a surge in Afghan civilian casualties.
Last week, Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission recorded 17 targeted and suicide attacks on places of worship in the last nine months which claimed the lives of 170 people.
The Commission’s report cited data from October 17, 2019 to July 13, 2020, reports TOLO News.
31 militants killed
Afghan security forces killed 31 Taliban militants and injured 15 others in Nangarhar province, the Defence Ministry said on Thursday.
“The Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) were aware of an imminent attack on checkpoints in Qelgho area of Khogyani district late Wednesday. The ANDSF launched a responsive attack, leaving the casualties among the Taliban,” the Ministry said in a statement.
Ten vehicles were also destroyed during the fighting and five Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were defused after the clashes, Xinhua news agency reported citing the statement as saying.
Attahulla Khogiani, provincial government spokesman, told Xinhua that 13 of the killed Taliban members were foreign militants.
“Thirteen non-Afghan nationals were among the killed. The peace pact signed between the US and the Taliban in Doha in February required the Taliban militants to reduce violence and cut ties with foreign militants and militants of Al Qaeda international terrorist group,” Khogiani said.
“But Taliban did not sever ties with the international terrorists, and the foreign militants still support Taliban in the fight against the government and the people of Afghanistan,” he said.
Since the signing of the peace deal, Afghan leaders, including President Ashraf Ghani, have frequently demanded the Taliban to reduce violence.
The militants, however, have intensified attacks, killing and injuring scores of combatants and civilians.