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LILLE, France (Reuters) - Five migrants were wounded on Saturday when shots were fired during a brawl in the northern French port of Calais, the local prefect's office said.

Gunshots were exchanged between groups of Afghans in the late afternoon, it said.

A police source said the incident occurred during what was probably a dispute between migrant smugglers. The shots were fired near the local Secours Catholique charity on the outskirts of Calais.

Three migrants were being treated in a Calais hospital and a fourth, who was more seriously wounded, had been transferred to a hospital in Lille. A fifth was treated at the scene.

Calais is a magnet for migrants aiming to reach Britain, a short distance across the Channel.

Last year, authorities cleared the makeshift "Jungle" camp in Calais, but people hoping to get into Britain by crossing the Channel in trains or ferries are steadily returning.

Authorities estimate at 500 and associations at 700 the number of migrants from Ethiopia, Eritrea and Afghanistan still in Calais.

(Reporting by Pierre Savary; Writing by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Dale Hudson)

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Reuters