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KABUL (Sputnik) – A mortar shell hit a home in the eastern Afghan province of Parwan on Saturday, killing three civilians and wounding five others, a spokeswoman for the governor said.
The Parwan governor’s spokeswoman, Wahida Shahkar, said Taliban* insurgents were behind the attack, which took place in the Siahgard district, north of Kabul.
But the Taliban* militant group denied a role in the shelling and blamed it on government troops. Fighting resumed in Afghanistan after the three-day ceasefire between the national government and Taliban* on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr, a Muslim holiday marking the end of the fasting period, expired on Tuesday.
Earlier in the day, the government released some 710 Taliban* prisoners as part of President Ashraf Ghani’s commitment to free 2,000 militants in response to the Eid ceasefire. Another 900 Taliban* prisoners were released across the country on Tuesday.
Previously, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) called for a halt to fighting and the initiation of intra-Afghan peace negotiations in its latest civilian casualty report after preliminary figures revealed a significant increase in Afghan civilian casualties for April.
The government and Taliban* are attempting to strike a deal, which seeks to end nearly two decades of war in the country and facilitate American troop withdrawal.
*Taliban is a terrorist group banned in Russia.