32 militants killed in Afghan army offensives. Image Source: IANS News

Kabul, March 8 : At least 32 militants have been killed and 23 others injured during clashes and airstrikes within the past 24 hours amid escalation of violence across the country, authorities said.

In Kandahar province, 13 Taliban militants were killed and seven others wounded during military operations conducted by Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) in Arghandab, Panjwai, and Zerai districts, the Defence Ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

The Afghan Air Force (AAF) supported the ground forces during the operations.

The ANDSF also destroyed a vehicle carrying a heavy machine gun, and a number of weapons and ammunition, the ministry said in a statement.

The engineering teams of the army also found and defused 50 rounds of landmine and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Arghandab of Kandahar, according to the statement.

In Mianshin district, seven Taliban militants were killed, three wounded, and their weapons and ammunition were destroyed by airstrikes conducted by AAF on Saturday, the army's 203 Thandar Corps confirmed earlier in the day.

"The ANDSF targeted militants' positions in Obe, Pashton Zarghon districts of western Herat province, killing four militants and wounding seven others, besides destroying some amount of militants' weapons and ammunition," an army source told Xinhua.

In Balkh province, five Taliban militants were killed after ANDSF targeted the militants in Chimtal district, Hanif Rezai, spokesman of army Corps 209 Shaheen, told Xinhua.

Six militants were wounded during the clashes, he added.

The authorities did not mention if there were any casualties on the side of security forces during the period.

In addition, three Taliban militants were killed after an IED they were planting exploded prematurely in Nijrab district, Kapisa province, on Saturday afternoon, a police spokesman told Xinhua.

Violence continues in the war-torn country even as peace talks between the Afghan government delegation and Taliban representatives are being held in Doha, the capital of the Gulf state of Qatar.

The negotiations were launched in September 2020 to find a peaceful solution to the prolonged Afghan conflict, but no tangible progress has been reported yet.

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