Emma Graham-Harrison
The Guardian
February 24, 2014

The Taliban killed 21 Afghan soldiers on Sunday at a remote outpost near the border with Pakistan, and took at least five others prisoner, in a show of military strength just weeks before a critical election.

The night raid was one of the deadliest single attacks in recent years on the Afghan military, who are stronger and more disciplined than the police and less often targeted directly by insurgents.

President Hamid Karzai cancelled a planned trip to Sri Lanka to deal with the fallout from the deaths, and in a swipe at his neighbour condemned Islamabad for tolerating havens for the insurgents just inside its border.

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