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As many as 60 school girls were poisoned in Afghanistan's northern Takhar province on Tuesday, as security forces began making arrests in relation to the recent string of poisoning cases.

Takhar provincial spokesman Mustafa Rasouly said on Tuesday that at least eleven people, including a "group leader", were arrested by local security forces after investigations into the poisonings.

Today's apparent poisoning took place in the Rustaq district of Takhar province, with health officials confirming the hospitalization of the school students.

This comes as Ministry of Interior spokesman blamed elements of the militant Taliban, other insurgent groups, and even foreign spy agencies, for the spate of suspected poisonings in Takhar.

"Preliminary investigations show that this has been done by Taliban and those terrorist groups and intelligence agencies of some foreign countries," Sediq Sediqqi said on Tuesday.

He added that the Taliban have shown themselves to be the enemy of any kind of education and development of Afghanistan, particularly the education of girls.

The Taliban strongly rejected the accusations in a statement in the past fortnight, threatening punishment to anyone who tries to poison Afghan students.

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