Nine Afghan security forces personnel have been killed in a suicide attack south of the capital Kabul, provincial officials have said.

"A suicide bomber detonated his explosives-laden vehicle against Afghan police forces in the Azra district of Logar province," Din Mohammad Darwesh, spokesperson for the provincial governor, told the AFP news agency on Saturday.

"Six police officers and three soldiers were killed."

A suicide bomber attacked a joint post of Afghan local police forces and army soldiers in Azra district of Logar province.

Zabihullah Mujahid, Taliban spokesperson

District governor Hamidullah Hamid confirmed the attack, while the Taliban claimed responsibility.

"A suicide bomber attacked a joint post of Afghan local police forces and army soldiers in Azra district of Logar province," Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said in an email statement sent to the media.

The Taliban, whose members often exaggerate death tolls in their attacks, said three soldiers and 10 police officers were killed.

The armed group, whose government was toppled by a US-led invasion in 2001, have intensified attacks throughout the country in recent months as NATO combat forces prepare to withdraw by the end of the year.

On October 14, six Afghan police officers were killed in a Taliban attack in Logar.

The Taliban have also made concerted pushes in the northern provinces of Kunduz and Faryab, and in northeastern Badakhshan province, where 17 police were missing after the Taliban made a new bid to seize territory last week.

The US military estimated in October that between 7,000 and 9,000 Afghan police or troops had been killed or wounded so far this year.

New Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has signed a deal with the US and NATO to allow 12,500 foreign troops, including 9,800 Americans, to stay behind in 2015 to carry out military training after the alliance's combat mission ends.

Source: Agencies