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Afghan official: Taliban kill 7 policemen in attack on checkpoint in country's north

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KABUL, Afghanistan — An Afghan official says seven policemen were killed in a northern province after their checkpoint came under attack by insurgents.

Abdul Manan Raoufi, police operational chief of Jawzjan province, says that along with the seven killed, five other policemen were wounded in the attack late Saturday in a village in the province's Qashtepa district.

He says police reinforcements were sent to the location and a gunbattle ensued in which five insurgents died.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

The militants have been stepping up their attacks against Afghan security forces in a bid to undermine the Western-backed government as foreign combat troops prepare to withdraw from the country by the end of the month.

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