Taliban attacks intensify in Afghanistan after peace talks pause

Kabul: The Taliban has intensified attacks in Afghanistan following the pause in the peace talks between the armed group and the US delegation in Qatar’s capital Doha as the militants in their latest offensive, killed 23 security personnel in Ghazni province.

An insider attack claimed the lives of 23 security personnel in Qarabagh district of the on Saturday, Xinhua news agency reported.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Majahid has claimed responsibility for the attack and said that the insurgents in overnight operation also killed another 32 soldiers and overran a military base in the same district.

The marathon talks initiated between the US and the Taliban outfit in October 2018 in Doha to find a negotiated settlement for Afghanistan’s lingering crisis broke down in September following a Taliban-linked car bomb that killed 10 people including an American soldier in Kabul.

The talks resumed on December 7 but were again suspended in the wake of a deadly truck bomb that targeted the main US military base in Bagram, 50 km north of Kabul, on December 11, which left eight dead including six attackers and injured over 70 civilians.

The Taliban claimed responsibility, insisting dozens of American soldiers and their local colleagues had been killed.

Taliban’s spokesman for Qatar office Zuhail Shaheen has reportedly justified the attack on Bagram military base, arguing attacking enemies would continue unless an agreement is reached between the two sides.

More than 60 people including 10 civilians, over two dozen security personnel and at least 30 militants have been killed elsewhere in the conflict-battered country since Friday.

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