Kabul: Nearly 30 Taliban rebels surrendered to the government in northern Afghanistan`s Badakhshan province, authorities said Monday.
"Two local Taliban leaders named Eidi Mohammad and Abdul Khabir along with nine of their men renounced violence and joined a government-initiated peace and reconciliation process in Tagab district, Badakhshan province, earlier Monday," Xinhua news agency quoted the Afghan interior ministry as saying in a statement.
The former insurgents also handed over five AK-47 rifles, a rocket launcher and several rounds of ammunition to the provincial police officials during a ceremony, said the statement.
On Sunday, 18 Taliban fighters, including their leader Safiullah Khan, laid their weapons down and joined the peace process in the same district, according to the statement.
With the former insurgents` surrender, peace and stability would further be strengthened in several parts of the province, the statement added.
The Afghan government set up a 70-member High Peace Council and launched the peace and reconciliation process in 2010 to encourage the Taliban to disarm and give up militancy against the government.