Afghan official: 4 civilians killed amid battle with Taliban

An Afghan official says four civilians have been killed and another eight wounded during a gunbattle between Afghan security forces and the Taliban in northeastern Badakhshan province.

Asadullah Mujadedi, a district police chief there, says the battle broke out after security forces launched a clean-up operation in Badakhshan's Jurm district.

Mujahdedi says the Taliban, armed with mortars and machine gun rifles, fired from within the houses in a blistering battle that lasted throughout the day on Thursday.

A statement from the Taliban on Friday claimed significantly more civilians were killed in the firefight and blamed the government for their deaths.