KABUL, Afghanistan, Aug. 10, 2011 — Afghan and coalition forces yesterday prevented a planned enemy explosion of a mosque in southern Afghanistan and killed a Taliban leader who led insurgent operations in the north, military officials reported.
A combined Afghan and coalition security force searching for a Taliban operative discovered an anti-personnel mine inside a mosque in the Zharay district of Kandahar province.
Afghan members of the force had entered the mosque to search for the man and found the mine, which Taliban insurgents had placed on a shelf.
In respect for the mosque, the combined force pulled away from the area and worked with local leaders to find a way to neutralize the mine without harming the building. The security force completed the operation and detained multiple suspects.
The target of the operation was an attack planner who supplies enemy weapons and roadside-bomb components for attacks against Afghan government officials in Kandahar City.
In other International Security Assistance Force news throughout Afghanistan yesterday:
— Coalition forces killed a senior Taliban leader with a precision airstrike in the Dowlatabad district of Faryab province. Mullah Nasir was a commission chief and the second in charge for Taliban operations in Jowzjan province. He was known for attacks on Afghan security checkpoints, and transporting supplies and weapons throughout the region. He reportedly killed villagers claiming they were spies, levied illegal taxes, burned homes, sold people’s livestock and threatened to kill those who supported the Afghan government or security forces.
— A combined force detained two suspected insurgents during an operation targeting a Taliban weapons trafficker in Helmand province’s Nahr‑e Siraj district.
— In Uruzgan province’s Tarin Kot district, a combined patrol found and seized 550 rounds of ammunition, 30 magazines, 20 mortar rounds, rifle components and a pair of binoculars.
— In Khost province’s Terayzai district, a combined force detained several suspected insurgents during a search for a Haqqani terrorist network member involved in distributing enemy weapons and building roadside bombs.
— A combined force in Ghazni province’s Wali Muhammad Shahid Khugyani district detained several insurgents with suspected ties to the Taliban while seeking a Taliban member known for building roadside bombs, coordinating insurgent movements and preparing attacks.
From an International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Release