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NATO Says Afghan District Center Recaptured In Airborne Assault


NATO says Afghan and international troops overnight recaptured the center of a district in Nuristan Province that had been taken last week by Taliban forces.

U.S. helicopters flew Afghan troops into the remote mountain area of Barg-e Matal near Afghanistan's eastern border with Pakistan. The airborne assault followed U.S. air strikes on Taliban forces who had concentrated in the area.

Nuristan's Provincial Governor Jamaluddin Badr told RFE/RL the attack also involved U.S. Special Forces.

"At 9 o'clock in the evening, our forces were dropped there. Thank God, without any resistance, they started moving freely in the district," he said. "In the morning, we will know if there's any resistance. In this operation, forces of the Afghan National Army, coalition commandos, and border forces are involved."

U.S. officers say more than 200 Afghan troops and a small U.S. advisory team plan to link up with Afghan forces who have remained in the area to battle Taliban fighters who have moved into the mountains.

U.S. officials say they think the operation will last several more days.

with agency reports