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Fighting Rages In Northern Afghan City

Heavy fighting has raged in the northern Afghan city of Kunduz for the third consecutive day as government forces repelled Taliban attacks.

Several hundred Taliban militants attacked Kunduz, a key city in northern Afghanistan, on April 15.

On April 17, insurgents intensified their attacks in several districts around Kunduz in their bid to retake the city that they captured briefly last year.

Kunduz police chief Qasim Jangalbagh told Reuters that militants overnight attacked several police checkpoints in Chardara district on the southwest outskirts of the city, which insurgents used as a base in last year's attack.

In addition, Jangalbagh said government forces repelled a major attack in Charkh Ab, to the east of Kunduz, as Taliban forces sought to stretch the city's defenses.

Kunduz police said 49 Taliban fighters had been killed and another 61 wounded in the past 24 hours.

A police spokesman said four members of the security forces were killed and 11 wounded.

The fighting around Kunduz come days after the Taliban announced the start of its annual spring offensive.

Based on reporting by Reuters and ToloNews