Taliban kill 9 police in eastern Afghanistan: Official

KABUL: At least nine police officers were killed Saturday in separate attacks by Taliban insurgents on police checkpoints in eastern Ghazni province, a provincial official said.

Arif Noori, spokesman for the provincial governor, said two police checkpoints came under attack by Taliban fighters in the early hours, also wounding two police. He said six insurgents were killed and nine others were wounded in the battle, which lasted almost an hour.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, according to their spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid. He said 14 police were killed, including both commanders of the checkpoints.

Afghan forces have struggled to combat a resurgent Taliban since US and NATO forces formally concluded their combat mission at the end of 2014, switching to a counterterrorism and support role.

In eastern Logar province, one person was wounded Friday when a military helicopter made an emergency landing as it was taking off and hit a tree, said Salim Saleh, spokesman for the provincial governor.

The NATO mission in Afghanistan, Resolute Support, confirmed a helicopter incident in Logar in a statement. It provided no additional details.

Saleh said the accident took place in Karwar district while the helicopter was supporting an operation to eliminate insurgents from the district.

Zabihullah Mujahid, Taliban spokesman, claimed their fighters shot down the helicopter in Karwar district.