There's been a linkup after more than a week of effort between U.S. Marines and Afghan ground troops pushing from the north and south of the insurgent stronghold of Marjah.
The action creates a direct route across the town that allows convoys to supply ammunition and reinforcements for the southern Afghanistan offensive seeking to oust the Taliban.
The commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan also pledged to work to regain the trust of the Afghan people following an airstrike that killed civilians. Gen. Stanley McChrystal took his apology directly to the Afghan people with a video on a NATO Web site.
Meanwhile, the Interior Ministry says an explosion today in the capital of Helmand left eight people dead and at least 16 others wounded. A police chief says the explosives were in a parked motorbike.
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