18:35 GMT03 April 2020
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    KABUL (Sputnik) - The Taliban movement on Saturday committed attacks in the Afghan provinces of Paktia and Balkh despite a seven-day decrease in hostilities agreed with the United States as a condition for signing a peace deal, a Sputnik correspondent reported.

    "At the start of the violence reduction period, at 01:45 a.m., the Taliban attacked a post in the Zazi Ariub district of the Paktia province, [the attack] lasted until 03:00 a.m.," Abdullah Hasrat, a spokesman for the Paktia governor, said in a statement, adding that the security forces have responded to the attack and no casualties or financial losses have been reported among the Afghan forces or civilians.

    Former Balkh governor Atta Mohammad Noor has made a similar statement regarding the province.

    "The Taliban attacked the Zara district in Balkh last night [and the attack] continued till late," Noor said.

    Noor pointed out that such attacks proved that the Taliban was uncivilised and had no single command.

    The week-long reduction of violence began in Afghanistan at midnight on Saturday (19:30 GMT). If considered successful by the sides, it will lead to the signing of the peace agreement between the Taliban and the United States on 29 February.

    Media reported last week that US officials had assured their Afghan counterparts that Washington was ready to use lethal force against the Taliban if the group violated terms of the violence reduction deal.

    Tags:
    ceasefire violation, ceasefire, United States, Taliban, Afghanistan
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