Afghan Taliban declares three-day ceasefire for Eid celebration this week

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KABUL: Taliban insurgents said on Monday they would observe a three-day ceasefire in Afghanistan for the Muslim religious holiday of Eid, starting this week, after weeks of increasing violence that gripped the country.

“In order that the Mujahideen again provide a peaceful and secure atmosphere to our compatriots during Eid-ul-Fitr so that they may celebrate this joyous occasion, all Mujahideen … are instructed to halt all offensive operations,” Mohammad Naeem, a Taliban spokesman, said on Twitter.

Eid will begin on Wednesday or Thursday this week depending on the sighting of the moon.

The ceasefire declaration came two days after bombings outside a school in the western part of the Afghan capital, Kabul, killed at least 68, most of them students, and injured more than 165 others.

No group claimed responsibility for the attack.

Taliban insurgents, fighting to overthrow the Afghan government since their ouster by US-led forces in late 2001, denied involvement in the bombings and condemned them.

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