US says Taliban fighters killed in central Afghanistan air strike

US military spokesman says the strike in Wardak province killed five fighters on Sunday.

Wardak province, Afghanistan

The United States carried out an air strike against the Taliban in central Afghanistan on Sunday evening in order to defend the Afghan security forces, a US military spokesman said.

The air strike in central Wardak province killed five Taliban fighters, Colonel Sonny Leggett said in a tweet on Monday.

He added that the strike was in line with its February withdrawal deal with the Taliban.

The Taliban earlier this month accused the US of violating the agreement – which Washington denies – when conducting air attacks in southern Helmand province as Taliban fighters launched a major operation in a bid to take the provincial capital.

Thousands of Afghans had to flee Helmand following days of intense fighting between the Taliban and Afghan security forces earlier this month.

The Taliban agreed to stop their attacks on condition that the US stop its air strikes in the area.

The continuing violence in Afghanistan threatens to derail peace talks between the Taliban and representatives of the Afghan government being held in the Qatari capital, Doha.

Negotiators from both sides in Afghanistan’s 19-year-old war have been meeting in Doha since September in an attempt to draw up a blueprint for the country after US and foreign forces leave next year.

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies