Taliban attack strategic Afghan city of Ghazni

The attack on Ghazni comes as the Taliban faces growing pressure to agree to peace talks with the Afghan government to end the 17-year war

"We can confirm that there were attacks last night on multiple government centers in Ghazni City, Ghazni province", Lt. Col. Martin L. O'Donnell, a spokesman for U.S. forces in Afghanistan, told TOLOnews.

The Taliban are fighting the Western-backed government to restore their version of sharia, or Islamic law, after they were driven out by US -led forces in 2001.

The Taliban have so far not confirmed being behind the earlier attack in Herat in which at least six policemen were killed at a district checkpoint.

The 203rd Thunder Corps Director of Operations Gen. Mohammad Alam Nejrabi said the Afghan National Defense and security Forces have repulsed the attack, inflicting heavy casualties on the militants.

The attack comes as pressure continues on the Taliban to enter peace talks with the Afghan government. He said three Taliban had been killed and eight wounded. Power has been cut to the area since fighting erupted. The militant group earlier said that hundreds of fighters had been involved and that government buildings, including the police headquarters, had been captured.

'We are scared for our life.

Dozens of bodies of Afghan soldiers have been found in a military base stormed by Taliban militants in the embattled Southern Province of Uruzgan, officials said on Thursday.

Another resident, Yasan, said the Taliban were using loudspeakers at the mosque to warn residents to stay in their homes. Sporadic gunfire could still be heard in the city, where Afghan special forces have been deployed. "We are terrified", Yasan wrote in a Facebook post.

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Taliban fighters hiding inside homes in the city's residential areas slipped into the streets attacking Afghan security forces, provincial police chief Farid Ahmad Mashal told The Associated Press.

'U.S. Forces responded with close-air support this morning in #Ghazni, ' the official account for US Forces in Afghanistan tweeted Friday.

"Afghan forces held their ground and maintain control of all govt. centers".

A spokesperson said the attack was "another failed Taliban attempt to seize terrain, which will result in yet another eye-catching, but strategically inconsequential headline".

Lieutenant Colonel Martin O'Donnell, a spokesman for U.S. forces in Afghanistan, said American forces and USA attack helicopters assisted Afghan troops in pushing back the Taliban during the night's multiple attacks in Ghazni.

At least one Afghan soldier had been killed and seven others wounded in the fighting in the southeastern city of Ghazni, a provincial governor spokesman told AFP on August 10.

A report in 2017 by SIGAR, a U.S. Congressional watchdog, said the losses were "shockingly high" but Afghan authorities no longer release overall casualty data. He did not say how many were dead and how many were wounded.

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