In the latest crackdown against the militant group, the security forces on Thursday raided their hideouts in Char Chino district of Uruzgan province, and killed 18 insurgents; a news agency reported citing a police statement.

"Security forces launched cleanup operation in Char chino district on Thursday and so far 18 rebels including a Taliban local military leader Mawlawi Islam have been killed," the statement said.

Twelve more militants have been captured, it added.

Police backed by the national army have arrested nearly two dozen Taliban militants over the past five days in Dasht-e-Archi district of Kunduz province, 250 km north of Kabul, provincial police Chief Khalil Andarabi said on Friday.

"During the five-day operations which concluded on Friday morning, police have captured 23 Taliban rebels and ensured law and order in 10 villages of Dasht-e-Archi district," Andarabi said.

No policemen or civilians were killed during the operations, he added.

However the Taliban rejected police claims, saying that the militants have inflicted casualties to the government forces.

The armed militant group in a statement posted on its website on Friday claimed that they killed two policemen in Char chino district on Thursday and inflicted casualties on Afghan and US forces in Herat and Paktia provinces on Friday morning.

Since warring sides in Afghanistan exaggerate the casualties of opponents, it is difficult to get verification from independent sources.


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