At least 13 Afghan soldiers were killed in their sleep in what has been described as an "insider attack". The slayings were reportedly carried out by the troops' comrades.

The incident took place in an outpost near Kunduz, a city in northern Afghanistan located about 208 miles from the capital, Kabul. Two soldiers with suspected links to the Taliban joined the hard-line group following the bloodbath, Reuters cited Sher Aziz Kamawal, a senior police commander in Kunduz as saying.

Mahmod Danish, a spokesman for the provincial governor in Kunduz, confirmed that two rogue soldiers aided the attack, which took place in the early hours of Monday (26 September). After turning on their colleagues, the two soldiers also played a part in their killings.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the fundamentalist militant group was behind the attack.

Last year marked the first time that Afghan security forces led internal security operations, taking over from Nato. But they faced serious setbacks as more than 5,000 police and troops died in 2015 alone.

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