Around 20 'enemy fighters' killed in Afghanistan | world | Hindustan Times
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Around 20 'enemy fighters' killed in Afghanistan

world Updated: Jun 23, 2007 10:14 IST

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Afghan and coalition soldiers killed nearly 20 "enemy fighters" in a seven-hour battle in southern Afghanistan that erupted after the troops came under attack, the US-led coalition said on Saturday.

The attackers, who had opened fire with machine guns in the southern province of Kandahar on Friday, had tried to flee but were chased by the troops, it said in a statement.

"Nearly 20 enemy fighters were killed during a seven-hour firefight and there were no Afghan civilian injuries reported," it said.

Several more fighters were killed in the adjoining province of Uruzgan when a battle erupted after troops were shot at with multiple rockets.

The coalition announced separately it had detained 20 militants in an operation early Saturday against Al-Qaeda militants at three compounds in Ghazni province.

At one compound fighters had fired rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns at the coalition forces, who returned fire and killed the assailants, the statement said.

It cited "credible intelligence" as saying the compounds sheltered Al-Qaeda.

The coalition, which led the invasion that drove out the Taliban in late 2001, is focussed on counter-terrorism operations targeted mainly at Taliban fighters and their allies from the Al-Qaeda terror network.