Taliban attack kills 13 Afghan police: officials

KABUL (AFP) - Taliban insurgents killed 13 local policemen on Friday in an attack on their checkpoint in southeast Afghanistan, officials said.

The policemen were sleeping when their post in the Andar district of Ghazni province came under fire, said district governor Mohammad Qasim Desiwal.

"They were asleep when their checkpoint came under attack by the Taliban and were killed by AK-47 fire," Desiwal said.

Provincial governor Mosa Khan Akbarzada confirmed the death toll and said a delegation had been sent to the district to investigate.

The victims were members of the 18,000-strong Afghan Local Police, a village-level but poorly trained force designed to provide security in rural areas.

Afghan troops and police are increasingly on the front line against the insurgents, and suffering heavier casualties, as NATO combat troops prepare to withdraw by the end of next year.

The bodies of four Afghan soldiers were found Wednesday with their throats slit in Jawzjan, a day after they were kidnapped by the Taliban along the road to the northern province, police and officials said.