U-S warplanes have carried out fresh bombing raids against positions of Afghanistan's ruling Taleban.
Attacks today (Thursday) were launched against frontline targets (in the Somali Plains) north of the capital, Kabul, and near the Tajikistan border.
Bombing was also reported near the strategic Taleban-held northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif, which the opposition Northern Alliance is trying to capture.
The opposition alliance has reported recent gains in the area. But the Pakistan-based Afghan Islamic Press quoted Taleban officials as saying their forces have beaten back an opposition offensive south of the city.
Pentagon officials said Wednesday most U-S air strikes were now aimed at helping the Northern Alliance break through Taleban lines around the Mazar-e-Sharif, which has a major airfield and lies on a key supply route to Kabul.
U-S warplanes are also continuing bombing raids elsewhere in the country, targeting Taleban military positions, as well as Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida terrorist network.
The Taleban says the bombings have not affected its fighting ability.