KABUL, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- At least 26 people including security personnel and militants have been killed in Afghanistan over the past 24 hours, amid reported breakthrough in the U.S.-Taliban talks to ink a peace deal within days.
In the latest event, Afghan military planes struck a Taliban hideout in Chardara district of northern Kunduz province on Friday, killing five insurgents, district governor Hafizullah Safi said.
An armored personnel carrier of the militants was also destroyed in the strikes, the official said.
On the same day and in the same province, Taliban stormed a police checkpoint in Chardara's neighboring Imam Sahib district, killing six police personnel, according to locals.
District governor Mahboubullah Sayedi confirmed the incident, saying police have cordoned off the area and initiated investigation.
Taliban purported spokesman Zabihullah Majahid confirmed the fighting in Imam Sahib district and, in contact with media, claimed that a Taliban infiltrator opened fire and after killing six police, joined the Taliban rank on Friday.
At least 15 more militants have been reportedly killed in Uruzgan, Kandahar and Faryab provinces over the past 24 hours.
The clashes were going on amid reported breakthrough in talks between the U.S. delegation and the Taliban representatives in Doha to sign a peace deal within days.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, during a telephone conversation with Afghan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani on Tuesday revealed that the Taliban agreed on "significant reduction" in violence.
Washington, according to U.S.-based media outlets, would soon sign a peace deal with the Taliban.