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Taliban Attack Kills At Least 11 Police In Northern Afghanistan


A Taliban attack on a district police headquarters in Afghanistan's northern Balkh Province has killed at least 11 police officers, Afghan officials say.

Munir Ahmad Farhad, a spokesman for the provincial governor, said a column of more than 400 Taliban fighters on motorbikes attacked Shortepa district police headquarters in the early hours. The attack sparked a gunbattle that is still under way.

"Eleven police officers were killed in the attack. The Taliban also suffered heavy losses," Farhad said.

Farhad said reinforcements were on their way to Shortepa.

Karim Khan, the Shortepa district chief, said the Taliban had captured 13 other policemen and set the headquarters buildings on fire before leaving the area.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the insurgents had overrun the district.

The chief of the Balkh provincial council, Muhammad Afzel Hadid, said he feared the toll could rise further unless reinforcements arrived promptly, as the district is in a remote area.

Balkh Province's Shortepa district
Balkh Province's Shortepa district

Taliban attacks have continued during the weekend's presidential election after the collapse of talks over a peace deal between the United States and the Taliban.

With reporting by AP