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Clashes Continue After A Southern Afghan District Falls To Taliban


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LASHKAR GAH, Afghanistan -- Heavy clashes continued between Afghan government forces and Taliban fighters in the southern city of Lashkar Gah on October 21, a day after the militant group seized a district there.

Afghan officials said reinforcement was sent to Lashkar Gah overnight after the city's Babaji district fell to the Taliban in the evening of October 20.

The clashes have prompted some local residents to flee Lashkar Gah, the provincial capital of Helmand.

The fighting has threatened Highway One, the main transport artery linking the major southern city of Kandahar with Herat.

Helmand was home to U.S. and British military bases -- Camp Leatherneck and Camp Bastion respectively -- before NATO combat operations ended in Afghanistan in 2014.

Helmand Province is one of the world's biggest centers of opium cultivation.

With reporting by Reuters
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