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    Afghans hail Helmand successes

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    Al Jazeera English

    by Al Jazeera English

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    US and Afghan officials have begun handing out gifts and bank notes to Afghan soldiers as a reward for their role in a major assault against the Taliban in southern Helmand province.

    Afghan forces raised the country's flag in the main market of the town of Marjah on the fifth day of the offensive, as US military officials announced they were in control of the crucial areas of the town.

    But the Taliban has disputed that claim.

    Al Jazeera's James Bays reports from Helmand. 17 Feb 10