Tunisian town near 'Star Wars' backdrop now features in battle against ISIS

March 26, 2015 1:41 PM

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Tunisian town near 'Star Wars' backdrop now features in battle against ISIS

(CNN)The desert and dun-colored cliffs around the town of Tataouine were once the backdrop for the movie "Star Wars," much of which was filmed in this neglected corner of Tunisia in 1976. This struggling town on the fringes of the Sahara still draws a few fans of the movie but now finds itself part of a real conflict, as a way-station for jihadists crossing the Libyan border 60 miles to the east.

Earlier this month, before the gun attack on the Bardo Museum in Tunis, three young men were arrested here as they allegedly made plans to cross into Libya to join a terrorist network. A local official told CNN they had since been taken to Tunis for questioning.

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