The Taliban has denied endorsing President Donald Trump after reports emerged claiming the Afghan militant group had said it hoped the US president would be re-elected.

Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesperson for the Taliban, was reported to have supported Mr Trump’s bid to remain in the White House and expressed concern over his health.

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CBS News quoted Zabihullah Mujahid to have said during a phone interview: “We hope he will win the election and wind up US military presence in Afghanistan.”

The American news outlet also said another Taliban senior leader told them: “When we heard about Trump being Covid-19 positive, we got worried for his health, but seems he is getting better.”

In response, Trump campaign spokesperson Tim Murtaugh said they “reject” the Taliban support, adding: “The Taliban should know that the president will always protect American interests by any means necessary.”

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But the Taliban also appeared to reject the comments as Mr Mujahid published a “clarification” on Sunday, saying CBS “misinterpreted and misrepresented my words”.

“US news outlet @CBSNews has interpreted and published my remarks incorrectly. Nothing of the sort has been communicated as publicised by them,” he wrote on Twitter.