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UPDATED: 15:48, July 19, 2006
Troops recapture second town from Taliban in S. Afghanistan
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Afghan and coalition forces took back a second town in the southern Helmand province from Taliban militants on Wednesday, said the Afghan Defense Ministry.

The forces regained the town, center of Garmsir district, at 7: 30 a.m., and raised the Afghan national flag there, the ministry said in a press release.

The troops didn't come across resistance when regaining the town, as the Taliban insurgents had fled, it added.

At about 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Afghan and coalition forces had reoccupied another town, center of Nawa district, also in Helmand.

The Taliban captured the two towns on Monday, apparently in order to show they had the ability to effectively control some major parts of this war-weary country.

However, they have suffered a great loss of nearly 800 fighters since 11,000 coalition and Afghan forces launched Mountain Thrust Operation in southern Afghanistan in mid-May.

It is the second time that Taliban militants temporarily took control of districts from the government.

About two months ago, some militants occupied Chora district in the southern Uruzgan province, but soon lost it after a bloody fight.

Source: Xinhua

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