6 Afghan soldiers, 18 militants killed within day

2014-09-08 05:15:43 GMT2014-09-08 13:15:43(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

KABUL, Sept. 8 (Xinhua) -- The Afghan army has killed 18 Taliban militants within the last 24 hours, the country's Defense Ministry said Monday morning. "Up to 18 militants had been killed and five others injured during Afghan army operations in seven out of 34 provinces within the last 24 hours,"the ministry said in a statement.

The statement also confirmed that six army personnel were killed in roadside bomb attacks and enemy forces'direct fire over the same period across the country.

The army specialists also defused 70 Taliban roadside bombs and landmines.

The Taliban insurgent group has intensified attacks over the past couple of months as the NATO and U.S. forces are withdrawing the country.

On Sunday night, a district police chief and two policemen were killed while several security forces were injured in a suicide bomb attack inside Arghistan district office building of southern Kandahar province.

The war-torn country is due to take over the responsibility for its own security from NATO-led troops by the end of year.

More than 44,000 NATO-led coalition troops, down from the peak of 130,000 in 2010, are stationed in Afghanistan. Some 30,700 of them are Americans and the United States plans to trim its forces to less than 10,000 next year.

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