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Afghans retreat across border

Small groups of Afghan refugees, some of them wounded, are beginning to reach Pakistan through snow-covered mountain passes from Nuristan and Kunar Provinces, after the first big Soviet-led offensive against Afghanistan's guerrillas. Officials said several hundred men, women, and children -- many separated from their families -- crossed into Pakistan's Mohamand and Bajaur tribal districts Tuesday and Wednesday.

The flow of refugees was expected to increase substantially after a Soviet advance up the Kunar Valley that smashed the rebels' grip on the province. Officials said some of the refugees, including women, had bullet wounds and bums.

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Afghan rebel spokesmen charged that the Soviet Union used scorched-earth tactics in Kunar, indiscriminately hitting settlements and villages with bombs, artillery, napalm, and incendiary devices.


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