Kabul accuses Taliban of killing 291 security personnel in past week
KABUL: The Taliban killed at least 291 Afghan security personnel over the past week, a top government official said Monday, accusing the insurgents of unleashing a wave of violence ahead of potential talks.
The past week was the "deadliest" in the country's 19 years of conflict, said Javid Faisal, spokesman for the National Security Council, even as the insurgents dismissed the latest figures.
The Taliban carried out 422 attacks in 32 provinces in the past week, killing 291 security force personnel and wounding 550 others, Faisal said on Twitter.
"Taliban's commitment to reduce violence is meaningless, and their actions inconsistent with their rhetoric on peace," he said.
The Taliban rejected the latest government figures.
"The enemy aims to hurt the peace process and intra-Afghan talks by releasing such false reports," Zabihullah Mujahid, the Taliban's spokesman in Afghanistan, told AFP.
"We did have some attacks last week, but they were mostly in defence."
Violence had dropped across much of Afghanistan since the Taliban announced a three-day ceasefire on May 24 to mark the Eidul Fitr holiday, but officials have accused the insurgents of stepping up attacks in recent weeks. - AFP