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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 August 2006, 10:18 GMT 11:18 UK
Taleban 'kill woman for spying'
Taleban fighters have killed an Afghan woman and her son and then hung their bodies in public for spying for foreign forces, a senior Afghan official says.

The Deputy Governor of the southern province of Helmand, Amir Mohammed Akhaunazada, said the incident happened in the district of Mousaqala.

A Taleban spokesman told the BBC the report was not true.

Elsewhere at least 16 Taleban fighters are reported to have been killed as well as one Afghan soldier.

The mother and her son were shot dead on Tuesday and their bodies hung from a tree, the deputy governor told Reuters news agency.

Taleban spokesman Qari Mohammad Yousuf told the BBC: "When we do things like this, we announce it first to the media.

"We have executed a number of people for spying, but only after careful investigation beforehand."

'Significant engagement'

US-led forces and Afghan troops have killed 12 Taleban fighters in the eastern province of Nuristan, the US military says.

"There was a significant coalition engagement yesterday in Nuristan, in which enemy extremists attacked our forces with rockets and rifle fire," Col Tom Collins told journalists in Kabul on Wednesday.

He said one Afghan soldier and two US soldiers were injured.

In Ghazni province two Taleban fighters were killed after they attacked Afghan soldiers, the province's police chief told the BBC.

Nato forces have acknowledged killing an Afghan soldier by mistake in Helmand province on Tuesday.

A Nato statement said the soldier was mistaken for an enemy fighter.

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