Six police officers poisoned and then shot dead

Afghan police officers illustration 
By: Eva Fett 

Six police officers were poisoned by food and then were shot dead, according to reports.

The shooting, which is the latest in a series by Afghan security personnel aimed at domestic and foreign colleagues, occurred in the Gereshk district of the volatile Helmand province on Thursday.

"A cook first poisoned the police food in the office, and after they fell unconscious were shot dead," provincial spokesperson Ahmad Zeerak said.

He said that the police officers involved in the shooting have been arrested, but the cook fled.
Farid Ahmad Farhang, a provincial police spokesperson, confirmed the incident.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, according to Taliban spokesperson Yousif Ahmadi, who said eight police officers were killed and their weapons were seized.

The Afghan police force is key in supporting the NATO-led forces in the war against Taliban militants.

Afghanistan has seen an increase in internal attacks, often by Taliban spies, in which more than 50 foreign and local forces have been killed by their peers this year alone.

The unprecedented number of murders come at a critical time in the war of 12 years since the NATO-led forces plan to hand security responsibility to the Afghans ahead of a withdrawal of combat forces by the end of 2014.