In Afghanistan, 15 security personnel have been killed in an attack by Taliban in Farah province. Air strikes had killed 56 insurgent fighters, he said.
A total of 171 militants were killed as a result of anti-terror operations in 10 provinces of Afghanistan over the past 24 hours, the country's Defense Ministry said on Sunday in a statement, Sputnik reported.
The announcement came days after local officials said the Taliban had inflicted heavy losses on Afghan special forces in another district of Farah, a poor and isolated region where the government has long struggled to impose control.
Taliban fighters attacked troops assembled to prepare an attack in Bala Buluk district in the night, setting off a fierce battle, officials said.
In a message posted on Twitter, he said 53 commandos had been killed or wounded after arriving in Tapa Sadat, close to the Bala Buluk district center, and a sizable quantity of weapons seized.
An Afghan official says insurgents have taken control of a district headquarters in western Farah province.
The pressure on Farah has grown as USA air strikes and Afghan army operations have inflicted heavy casualties on Taliban fighters in neighboring Helmand province, the country's main opium-growing region and a heartland of the insurgency.