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37 killed in Afghanistan gunbattle

world Updated: Aug 17, 2008 19:54 IST
Xinhua

At least 37 people - five security guards and 32 Taliban rebels - were killed in a fierce gun battle in Afghanistan's southern Zabul province on Sunday, provincial administration official Gulab Shah Alikhil said.

"Taliban militants attacked a convoy supplying logistic support to NATO troops in the province this morning, killing five security guards and injuring eight others and the government troops rushed to the area and eliminated 32 rebels," Alikhil said.

He added that the militants in retreat failed to take the bodies of their compatriots.

Only one Afghan soldier was slightly injured in the battle, Alikhil added.

The government troops also seized 16 motorbikes and 18 assault rifles from the fleeing insurgents, he said.

There was no immediate comment from Taliban.