Afghan and NATO-led troops have killed some 50 Taliban fighters and surrounded up to 250 more close to the main southern city of Kandahar, the provincial police chief said on Oct. 31. Clashes also broke out in the east, west and north of the country and insurgents massed in unusually large numbers in at least one other region in an apparent surge in violence ahead of the usual winter lull at the end of the “fighting season.” Taliban fighters moved into the Arghandab district, only some 12 km from Kandahar, after a pro-government tribal leader who held the area died of a heart attack two weeks ago. (Reuters)

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