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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Tajik Rebels Free 8 German Climbers

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan — After five days of fierce fighting in the high mountains along the border with Tajikistan, Kyrgyz troops pushed Islamic rebels out of the country Tuesday, said the presidential press service.

Officials also said eight German mountaineers who had been taken hostage by the rebels were released Tuesday.

The rugged area where the borders of Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan meet has been the scene of frequent fighting between troops and rebels who want to carve out an Islamic state in the area. The latest fighting started Friday.

A Kyrgyz official said earlier Tuesday about 40 militants had been killed. A government source speaking on condition of anonymity said Monday that more than 25 Kyrgyz troops had been killed.