Afghan soldiers killed in 'friendly fire' gunfight, US airstrike

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attacks in Badghis which is on the border with Turkmenistan. — AFP  File

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attacks in Badghis which is on the border with Turkmenistan. — AFP File

Taliban spokesman Qari Yousuf Ahmadi said 20 soldiers had been killed, 28 captured and a large supply of weapons and ammunition seized.Southeast of the Afghan capital, Kabul, in Ghazni city, an air strike on a vehicle killed seven Taliban on Tuesday, including a commander, said Mohammad Arif Noori, spokesman for Ghazni's provincial governor.

There were no additional details.

"Afghan and United States forces attempted to de-escalate the situation but they continued to be fired upon". Some U.S. forces carry out counter-terrorism operations with Afghan forces battling the Taliban, which was ousted from power in 2001.

Somewhere in the vicinity of this post, a joint convoy of U.S. troops and Afghan Special Forces was attacked by another unit of Afghan ground troops.

He says the Afghans have "a report of a misunderstanding between the US and Afghan forces" but that exact details of what happened are as yet unknown.

The incident occurred on Wednesday when a USA and Afghan patrol came under fire near an Afghan army post on the outskirts of Tarin Kot, the capital of Uruzgan province, a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation spokesman in Kabul said.

Sources said the warring sides had got closer to agreeing an American troop withdrawal and the Taliban's guarantee that Afghan soil would never again be used to launch terrorist attacks on other countries.

They called in air strikes which hit the army post, killing five and seriously wounding a further 10 Afghan soldiers, said Karim Karimi, deputy head of the Uruzgan provincial council.

The attacks were the latest violence in war-torn Afghanistan even as the Taliban and the USA concluded another round of negotiations held in Qatar, with both sides reporting progress in the talks. Also in Farah, a local official was gunned down outside his home on Wednesday.

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