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Violence in Afghanistan leaves two NATO soldiers and eight Afghan police dead

Eight Afghan policemen, two NATO service members, two local officials and seven other Afghans were killed in violence across Afghanistan on Wednesday.

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An Afghan National Police (ANP) trainee takes his aim with a mock gun at the PTC (Police Training Centre) shooting range of the German Police Project Team (GPPT) next to Camp Marmal, the Bundeswehr (German Federal Defence Force) base in Mazar-i-Sharif, on March 22, 2012. (Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images)

Eight Afghan policemen, two NATO service members, two local officials and seven other Afghans were killed in violence across Afghanistan on Wednesday.

A three-hour gun battle with the Taliban in the remote mountainous district of Wardooj in the north-eastern province of Badakhstan left eight Afghan police men and two militants dead, the BBC reports.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement sent to reporters by the group's spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid.

In the eastern province of Nangarhar a tribal elder and two local officials were killed by a roadside bomb, and at least four people including a child were killed in a grenade attack in the province.

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Meanwhile, an insurgent attack and a homemade bomb killed two NATO soldiers in the south of the country, officials said, without providing any further details about Wednesday’s attack, the Associated Press reports.

The deaths bring the number of coalition troops who have died in Afghanistan this year to 174.

Wednesday’s violence came as the UN released new figures showing that the number of civilians killed in the war during the first four months of 2012 had fallen by 21 percent compared to the same period in 2011, according to the Agence France Presse

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/afghanistan/120530/violence-afghanistan-leave-two-nato-soldiers-dead