16:32 GMT +317 January 2020
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    KABUL (Sputnik) - Taliban militants have attacked a police checkpoint in the northern Afghan province of Balkh, leaving eight people dead and three others injured, Balkh Police Chief Ajmal Fayez said on Wednesday.

    Fayez stated that a group of Taliban insurgents had attacked and seized control of a police checkpoint on the Mazari Sharif — Sheberghan highway for a short period of time overnight Tuesday and were soon repelled from the area.

    According to Afghan media, citing local officials, the Taliban had a mole among the checkpoint's 14 officers who helped carry out the attack. The movement, however, has not yet addressed the incident.

    Tensions in the country continue to escalate despite talks between the Taliban and American officials, relaunched after a 3-month break. The previous year-long series of negotiations had seemingly reached a point where it looked like an agreement would be signed, but the talks were halted after the death of a US soldier in a Taliban attack.

    An Afghan peasant ploughs near Soviet-made D-30 howitzers just outside the village of Ai-Khanum, Northern Afghanistan, Friday Nov. 9, 2001.
    © AP Photo / Sergei Grits
    An Afghan peasant ploughs near Soviet-made D-30 howitzers just outside the village of Ai-Khanum, Northern Afghanistan, Friday Nov. 9, 2001.

    At the moment, the movement is ready to conclude a ceasefire accord to work on a peace deal that envisages the withdrawal of the US-led coalition forces after an 18-year campaign in exchange for security guarantees from the Taliban.

    Tags:
    terror attack, Alami Balkhi, Taliban, Afghanistan
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