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Defence Minister Alain Richard of France admitted on Monday that French special forces and/or intelligence operatives were already inside Afghanistan.
Richard told France-Inter Radio that France was providing logistical support to the United States in the form of assistance in locating targets inside Afghanistan.
"Satellite images are not enough, so there must be other forms" of locating targets, the defence minister told the radio station.
Asked point-blank if that meant French personnel were inside the war-torn country, he replied, "As you can imagine, yes."
Richard did not, however, give any further details.
On Sunday, United States Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfled had admitted, though not in so many words, that some American troops were already inside Afghanistan.
President Jacques Chirac of France had also declared that his country's troops would participate in action against the Taleban and Osama bin Laden's Al Qaeda network.
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