Afghan forces on Saturday thwarted multiple coordinated assaults on security checkpoints across the country killing over 100 Taliban militants, the Defense Ministry said.
According to a ministry statement, 45 Taliban militants were killed in a bid to overrun Farah city bordering Iran. Sixteen security personnel were killed in the clashes, the ministry said.
Separately, 20 Taliban militants were killed in northern Farah province bordering Uzbekistan, 15 in northeastern Badakhshan province, 19 in eastern Ghazni province and 11 in Paktika province bordering Pakistan's restive tribal belt in the past 24 hours.
Also, 23 Daesh militants were killed in northeastern Nangarhar province.
The Taliban claimed to have killed 30 security personnel besides destroying and seizing a large cache of arms and vehicles in Farah as part of the annual spring offensives in a region with vital opium smuggling routes into neighboring Iran.
Farid Bakhtawar, head of the Farah provincial council, said fighters had stormed a police base overnight in Balabuluk, a district that has been under heavy pressure for months, killing at least 23 and wounding three.
In a separate attack in Farah city, Taliban fighters killed 11 police and seized a large quantity of weapons and equipment, he said.
The latest violence underlines the extent of the pressure faced by the Western-backed government of President Ashraf Ghani, already heavily criticized for a spate of suicide bombings in the capital, Kabul.
In another development, Mohammad Iqbal, police spokesman in Ghor province, told Anadolu Agency, the Taliban managed to enter Shahrak district, but efforts are underway to reclaim the area. Confirming casualties on both sides, he said the exact figures are not known yet.
The attacks come as Taliban launched their annual spring offensive dubbed 'al-Khandaq' (trench) in late April. Fighting has been intense in many areas of the country and it is expected to pick up further once the opium harvest is completed in coming weeks.
Last week, Taliban fighters, who challenge government control in almost half the country, seized a district in the northern province of Baghlan.
Farah, a remote and sparsely populated province between Iran to the west and the Taliban heartland of Helmand province in the south, has been a key battleground for the insurgents for months, with heavy fighting in Balabuluk district.
The region covers major smuggling routes into Iran from Helmand, source of much of Afghanistan's opium crop.
Afghan special forces, backed by air support, have been heavily involved in the fighting but have been unable to prevent repeated attacks by the insurgents.
Farah's governor resigned in January, claiming political interference and corruption, and residents have complained bitterly about security in the province.
Violence has also increased around voter registration centers set up ahead of parliamentary and district council elections that are due in October.
U.S. and NATO officials say Afghan forces, backed by thousands more U.S. military advisers and intensified air strikes, have been steadily improving and are matching and beating the Taliban.
However a recent report by SIGAR, a U.S. Congressional watchdog, said that the number of Afghan security forces personnel had fallen by 11 percent over the past year, even as fighting has intensified. Police, army and air force numbers were almost 40,000 below the authorized strength of 334,000, the report said.
The report showed the government controlled areas with about 65 percent of the population and controlled or influenced 56.3 percent of districts, the second lowest level since 2015, the first year after most international forces left Afghanistan.
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