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Three militants killed in Tajikistan fighting: Official

Last Updated: Friday, September 24, 2010 - 21:02

Dushanbe: Government forces in Tajikistan
killed three Islamist militants on Friday amid fresh fighting in a
volatile region near the border with Afghanistan, a Tajik
military official told a news agency.

Thousands of troops have surged into the remote Rasht
Valley region near the Afghan border as part of a manhunt for
militants believed responsible for a string of deadly attacks
throughout the Central Asian state in recent weeks.

"Three fighters have been killed," a Tajik military
official told a news agency under condition of anonymity.

"Their identity has not yet been established but these
fighters are from local terrorist organisations."

Tajikistan, a majority-Muslim country and the poorest
state to emerge from the collapse of the Soviet Union nearly
two decades ago, has suffered a string of attacks recently
that the government blames on Islamist militants.

The country`s deadliest attack this year occurred Sunday
when insurgents ambushed a military convoy in the Rasht
Valley, a mountainous region some 250 kilometres (150 miles)
east of the capital Dushanbe.

On Thursday, the al Qaeda-linked militant groups the
Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), claimed responsibility
for the attack, which killed at least 28 government soldiers.

First Published: Friday, September 24, 2010 - 21:02
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