Herat, December 7: A Taliban attack in Shindad district here on Thursday night killed at least 14 soldiers of the Afghan National Army and kidnapped 20. On the one hand, provincial governor's spokesman Jailani Farhad told TOLO news on Friday that the attack was orchestrated by Taliban militants and also confirmed the fatalities. On the other hand, Afghanistan's Ministry of Defence noted that only 10 soldiers had been killed during the assault but did not divulge any more details. The Ministry's spokesman Sayed Javid Ghafor further said that investigations pertaining to the incident were ongoing.
Quoting local sources, Pajhwok News Agency also reported that weapons at the outpost were taken by the Taliban militants while adding that help could only reach the region on Friday morning. The attacks come in the wake of calls for the re-initiation of peace talks in Afghanistan, which has seen strife within its borders since the last 17 years. Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani had recently formed a 12-member team for peace talks with the Taliban. Taliban Attacks on Afghan Military Checkpoints, 18 Soldiers Killed and 10 Kidnapped.
Meanwhile, the United States Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Ambassador, Zalmay Khalilzad, is currently on an eight-nation tour from December 2 to December 20 for accelerating the peace process in Afghanistan. He has, until now, met with Ghani in Kabul on Thursday along with the Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, following which he departed for Moscow to hold discussions.