An attack by gunmen in western Afghanistan has killed eight people, according to police officials in Farah province.
The attack late on Wednesday was carried out at an outpost of the government-backed Afghan Local Police force in the Khaki Safed district of the western province.
Shamsul Rahman Zahid, the provincial police chief, said that two members of the ALP were captured by the gunmen, who were armed with assault rifles.
Qari Yousef Ahmadi, a Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for the attack.
A district administrator said the attackers first strangled a guard posted outside before proceeding to open fire on those inside the compound itself. The attackers made off with the ALP weapons following the attack, said Abdul Khaliq Noorzai.
The ALP commander at the checkpoint was reported to have been a former Taliban member who had joined the government-backed security force.
The attack took place on the same days that a suicide blast in the generally quiet northern province of Faryab left 10 Afghans, both civilian and police, and three international soldiers dead.
A senior US defence official told The Associated Press that the three soldiers killed were US troops.
Wednesday's attacks come amid fears of an increase in fighting as harsh Afghan winter conditions begin to thaw.
The Taliban are targeting Afghan and NATO security forces as they fight to assert their power against the Afghan military, which international forces are hoping to take over security responsibility across Afghanistan by the end of 2014.
Police commander killed
Elsewhere in the country, a suicide bombing in the north of the country killed an Afghan Local Police commander and a bodyguard, according to police sources.
Eighteen other people were wounded in the blast, which took place in the Keshm district of northern Badakhshan province.
Abdul Maroof Rasekh, a provincial spokesman, said: "A suicide attacker targeted a group of local police forces in Keshm district today killing the commander of local police in the district and one of his bodyguards."
Rasekh named the commander as Nazek Mir and said that of the 18 civilians wounded in the bombing, most of them were in serious condition.