At least two Afghan security forces and dozens of Taliban fighters were killed in deadly clashes in the northern Balkh province, an official confirmed on Wednesday.

Ajmal Fayez, a spokesman for police headquarters in Balkh, told Anadolu Agency the incident late Tuesday in the province’s Chahar Bolak district also resulted in closure of the main Balk-Jawzjan highway. He said two security forces personnel were killed in an insurgent attack on a checkpoint.

The Afghan National Army's 209-Shaheen corps said in a statement that “scores” of insurgents have been killed in Chahar Bolak in a clean-up operation. The district remains a Taliban stronghold in this part of the country.

This clash comes weeks after the Taliban pledged to keep violence levels low in line with a landmark Feb. 29 peace deal with the U.S. paving the way for the eventual yet conditional withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan.