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Taliban attack leaves 35 dead at hospital in central Afghanistan

This file photo taken on May 31, 2017 shows Afghan volunteers carrying the body of a resident killed in a car bomb attack to the Wazir Akbar Khan hospital in the capital Kabul. (Photo by AFP)

At least 35 people have been killed when heavily-armed Taliban militants launched a deadly attack on a hospital in Afghanistan’s central Ghor province.

"When the Taliban entered the hospital they killed 35, all civilians," Shah Hussain Murtazawi a presidential spokesman confirmed on Monday, without specifying if they were patients or staff.

He added, "This is a cruel crime against humanity." 

Local media reported late Sunday that Taliban militants had set the local hospital alight and killed those inside without giving any casualty figures.

A spokesman for Taliban militants has said that parts of the hospital were damaged in the ongoing fierce fighting in the troubled area.

The developments come after the Taliban captured Taywara district in Ghor Province following days of intense fighting with Afghan troops. Provincial governor spokesman, Abdul Hai Khatibi, has confirmed militants’ seizure of Taywara district.

According to a report by a US watchdog in May, Afghan forces are currently in control of 59.7 percent of the war-ravaged country.

However, Taliban militants have intensified a campaign of killing Afghan security personnel and civilians across various regions of the war-ravaged country in recent weeks.

Afghan security personnel arrive at the site of an explosion in Kabul on March 13, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

In April, the group announced the start of its annual spring offensive against Afghan security forces and US-led foreign troops.

Insecurity has gripped Afghanistan since 2001, when the United States and its allies invaded the country as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror.

Many parts of the country remain plagued by militancy despite the presence of foreign troops.

Over the past 16 years, the Taliban militants have been conducting terrorist attacks across the country, killing and displacing civilians. In addition, the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, which is mainly active in Syria and Iraq, has managed to take recruits from Afghan Taliban defectors.

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