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Taliban offensive kills dozen of Afghan soldiers

A large Taliban offensive has killed at least 40 Afghan soldiers and police in Afghanistan's Baghlan province, reports Al Jazeera, as intense fighting continues between the two sides.

The attack on the military outpost, launched in the early hours of Wednesday, is the latest in a series of assaults launched by the Taliban across the country. It comes after the Taliban overran a military base in the northern Faryab province on Monday, killing at least 17 soldiers.

See more from Al Jazeera here.

Meanwhile the BBC reports that the Afghan Taliban has also announced that they will no longer guarantee the safe passage of ICRC (International Committee of the Red Cross) workers, after it claimed the humanitarian group failed to fulfil its obligations towards Taliban prisoners being held in an Afghan prison.

Hundreds of prisoners have been hunger striking at the Pul-e-Charkhi jail in the capital Kabul, protesting against prison conditions. The Taliban claims that the prisoners were in a terrible state of health and accuses the ICRC of failing to assist them.

See more from the BBC here.