Afghan and Australian Special Forces maintain pressure on insurgents

The Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) and Special Operations Task Group (SOTG) have continued operations against insurgent networks in Uruzgan Province throughout the winter period in Afghanistan.

ANSF and SOTG partnered operations have removed five insurgent commanders from Uruzgan Province over a period of six weeks during what is traditionally a time of lower activity.

Commander of Joint Task Force 633 Major General Stuart Smith said these operations had degraded the insurgents‘ ability to carry out attacks within Uruzgan.

“These are key leaders within the insurgent network that operates throughout Uruzgan and they are believed to be responsible for the facilitation and placement of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and for attacks on ANSF, coalition and Australian troops,” Major General Smith said.

“The SOTG has therefore made a major contribution in support of the overall mission of preparing the Afghans to assume security responsibilities in Uruzgan.”

Throughout these recent operations, the partnered force has also located and destroyed large quantities of IED materials and drugs including 3750kg of ammonium chloride and 120kg of heroin, 111kg of opium and 150kg of hash.

Commanding Officer of SOTG, Lieutenant Colonel J, said the winter operations had seen remarkable successes.

“The operations conducted by the ANSF and SOTG have targeted the key insurgent leadership, their supplies and their drug trade, effectively reducing their ability to fund and implement their future operations,” Lieutenant Colonel J said.

“Removing five insurgent commanders from Uruzgan Province will not only degrade the insurgents‘ capability, it will also improve security for the Afghan people as these IED makers and facilitators are no longer in operation.”

Press release
Ministerial Support and Public Affairs,
Department of Defence,
Canberra, Australia

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