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Afghan Rebels Killed, Others Captured

U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan (file photo) Kabul, 28 July 2005 (RFE/RL) -- The U.S. military says Afghan and U.S. forces killed three suspected rebels and captured another 15 during a clash today in central Afghanistan.

The military said that the troops were on patrol in Uruzgan Province when they came under fire. A battle followed and coalition aircraft were called up to provide support.

The 15 arrested militants were being questioned. Two Afghan soldiers were wounded.

Meanwhile, a U.S. military helicopter was destroyed by fire after the pilot was forced to land in southern Afghanistan. A spokeswoman for coalition forces explains: "The aircraft was one of two operating in the area at that time and was conducting operations in response to reports of enemy activity. Hostile fire was not involved in this incident. A fire which is believed to have started from the hard landing destroyed the aircraft and no one was injured in this incident."

The U.S. military said the helicopter was carrying 31 people.

(AP/dpa/Radio Free Afghanistan)