Dozens dead in overnight clashes in Afghanistan as peace talks continue Sep 18, 2020 0 5238 12345 AFPJalalabadFierce fighting between Afghan forces and the Taliban killed dozens in a restive eastern province, officials said on Thursday, as negotiators from both sides pushed ahead with peace talks.Overnight clashes erupted in three districts of Nangarhar province when Taliban fighters attacked several checkpoints of Afghan forces and pro-government militiamen, Ataullah Khogyani, spokesman for the Nangarhar governor told AFP.He said at least 11 Afghan security personnel were killed in fighting in Hesarak, while eight pro-government militiamen were killed in Khogyani.Khogyani said about 30 Taliban fighters died in the clashes -- including some foreigners.The hardline insurgent group has not commented on the fighting.The latest violence comes as the Afghan government and Taliban are engaged in talks in Doha aimed at ending the long-running conflict.Afghanistan’s acting Defence Minister Asadullah Khalid blamed the Taliban for the fighting.“There have been no attacks from our side... The enemies continue to attack and spill the blood of Afghans,” he said at a ceremony where US forces handed over four A-29 Super Tucano aircraft to the Afghan military.Abdullah Abdullah, the head of the peace process for the Afghan government, said the ongoing talks offered an opportunity to end the war.The two warring sides are at the negotiating table, a first in the three decades since the Taliban emerged as a movement across Afghanistan, Abdullah said.“We recognise the need to get together, to sit together, to present our views which are different from one another, but to find ways how to reconcile those differences,” Abdullah told Doha-based Al-Jazeera TV in an interview released on Thursday.He said negotiations aim to “find ways to be able (to) live together while maintaining some differences and fighting for it politically rather than through violence”.In his speech at the opening session of the peace talks on Saturday, Abdullah had called for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, but his plea has gone unanswered.The Taliban have long worried that reducing violence could lessen their leverage, but have implemented two temporary ceasefires this year itself. RELATED ARTICLES Clashes in Indian Kashmir after four killed Sep 18, 2020 0 1554 Libyan unity government chief says ready to step down Sep 18, 2020 0 1122 Defiant Ivory Coast ex-PM stands by presidential bid Sep 18, 2020 0 1878 Yemen prisoner swap talks today DUBAI: UN-sponsored talks on a prisoner exchange deal between Yemen’s warring sides have been postponed by a day to Friday, according to a Yemeni government source. The internationally recognised government and .. US sanctions cyber actors backed by Iran’s Intelligence Ministry DPA Washington The United States on Thursday sanctioned an Iranian hacking group with links to Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence for targeting hundreds of individuals and entities in 30 countries across Africa, Asia, .. Lebanon’s premier-designate plans more talks to form government DPA Beirut Lebanon’s prime minister-designate Mustafa Adib said on Thursday he plans more discussions as he struggles to form a new government to deal with the country’s economic woes. “I agreed with the .. No Middle East peace without solving ‘Palestinian problem’: Russia AFP Moscow Russia said on Thursday it would be a “mistake” to think lasting peace in the Middle East could be secured without resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The foreign ministry statement came after Israel .. Erdogan lashes out at ‘incapable’ French president AFP Ankara Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday said France was being led by an “incapable” president as he stepped up his personal feud with Emmanuel Macron. Erdogan and Macron have traded insults for ..