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Afghan Forces Retake District from Taliban

Afghan National Army soldiers patrol with United States Army soldiers from Bravo Company, in the volatile Arghandab Valley, outside Kandahar City, 10 July 2010.

Afghan forces have taken back control of a district in the eastern part of the country, after losing it briefly to Taliban fighters in a fierce gun battle, according to Afghan officials.

Afghan forces moved back into the Khogyani district of Ghazni province Monday just hours after it fell to Taliban militants. Afghan officials said the Taliban burned some government buildings before leaving.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid confirmed insurgents had left the area. He claimed the Taliban had captured several Afghan police officers and their weapons.

Meanwhile, NATO said Monday its forces killed at least 15 militants during an assault on a Taliban supply depot in southern Helmand province. The operation was carried out with Afghan security forces, in heavy fighting over two days, officials said.

Elsewhere in Helmand, government officials say militants killed two women who worked for an aid organization. A government spokesman says the women worked for a non-governmental agency that provided educational and professional training for women.

The International Security Assistance Force said it killed or captured top militants working for the Haqqani Network and the Taliban after a series of operations in Helmand, Paktiya, Khost, Paktika and Kandahar provinces.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.