Stars and Stripes 25 Dec, 2020 11:15 am

Afghan army: Two officers killed by roadside bomb in north

Afghan army: Two officers killed by roadside bomb in north
At least two Afghan army officers including a battalion commander were killed Friday when their vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb in the northern Balkh province, the military said.

The attack was the latest amid relentless violence in Afghanistan even as Taliban and Afghan government negotiators hold talks in Qatar, trying to hammer out a peace deal that could put an end to decades of war.This is the first batch of prisoners released by the Taliban since the start of direct peace talks with the Afghan government in September.Violence in Afghanistan has spiked even amid the Taliban and Afghan government peace negotiations in Qatar, which after some recent procedural progress have been suspended until early January.Rezaie blamed the Taliban, who are active in both districts and regularly launch attacks against Afghan security forces.

Elsewhere, the Taliban announced the release of 30 imprisoned Afghan security personnel on Thursday in the southern Kandahar province's Panjwai district.Earlier this year, the government freed more than 5,000 Taliban prisoners in exchange for the Taliban releasing around 1,000 Afghan security forces.

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