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The Taliban has a permanent presence in 54% of Afghanistan and the country is in serious danger of falling into the group's hands, according to a report by an independent thinktank with long experience in the area.
Despite the presence of tens of thousands of Nato-led troops and billions of dollars in aid, the insurgents, driven out by the US invasion in 2001, now control "vast swaths of unchallenged territory, including rural areas, some district centres, and important road arteries,"