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Troops kill 40 militants east of Afghan capital

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - NATO says an operation to provide security ahead of parliamentary elections next month in Afghanistan has killed about 40 Taliban fighters.

Afghan and international forces engaged the insurgents east of the Afghan capital, Kabul.

One coalition soldier was killed in fighting in the volatile south where the insurgency is most heavily entrenched. NATO says the soldier was not an American.

A total of 48 foreign troops have been killed in Afghanistan this month, including 30 Americans.

NATO also says U.S. troops fired warning shots to disperse a protest in eastern Afghanistan over the arrest of a religious leader suspected of a rocket attack.

The alliance said no civilian injuries were reported from Monday's demonstration, but a police official says unidentified gunfire killed one person.

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