A local army officer and four of his men were wounded during the attack on Thursday, police said.
 
The six Taliban members were killed after their ambush in the south-eastern province of Khost, near the border with Pakistan, said provincial police chief Muhammad Zaman.

"We launched a counter raid after Taliban attacked commander Najibullah's vehicle with an RPG that wounded Najibullah and four of his soldiers," Zaman said.

"As a result of our attack six Taliban soldiers were killed with their guns lying next to their bodies," he added.

Four government soldiers and six Taliban fighters were killed in a clash in the same area two months ago.

Afghan forces launched counter
attack after a Taliban ambush

No Taliban reaction

There was no immediate comment from the Taliban, who were forced out from power by a US-led attack in late 2001.

Khost residents said US military aircraft were active in the area, apparently called in to hunt the attackers, but the US army in the capital, Kabul, said it had no such information.

About 1100 people including fighters, civilians, aid workers, Afghan and foreign troops have been killed in violence in south and south-eastern Afghanistan in the past 18 months.

Attacks however, have decreased since October. The Taliban said that weather conditions hindered their activities, but vowed to step up attacks after the snow thaws in the mountains, which is usually in April.

About 18,000 US-led foreign troops are in Afghanistan in search of al-Qaida and Taliban fighters.