Afghanistan — Afghan-International Forces Make Progress Across Afghanistan

WASHINGTON, July 23, 2010 — Afghan-inter­na­tion­al forces seized ene­my weapons caches, cap­tured or killed numer­ous insur­gents, and reopened a long-closed school dur­ing recent oper­a­tions con­duct­ed across Afghanistan, mil­i­tary offi­cials report­ed.

In yesterday’s Afghanistan news:

— An Afghan Nation­al Direc­torate of Secu­ri­ty force dis­cov­ered a large quan­ti­ty of impro­vised explo­sive device-mak­ing mate­r­i­al in a rock quar­ry in the Spin Boldak dis­trict of Kan­da­har province last night. The cache con­tained about 1,900 kilo­grams of ammo­ni­um nitrate, more than 5,400 elec­tron­ic fus­es, about 3,200 meters of det­o­na­tion cord and 275 kilo­grams of black pow­der. The ammo­ni­um nitrate and black pow­der alone could be used to make more than 100 IEDs. The Afghan force asked for Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force help in destroy­ing the cache.

“This find demon­strates the ever-increas­ing capa­bil­i­ty of the Afghan Nation­al Secu­ri­ty Forces to oper­ate inde­pen­dent­ly,” Col. Rafael Tor­res, ISAF Joint Com­mand Com­bined Joint Oper­a­tions Cen­ter direc­tor, said. “It also takes a large num­ber of poten­tial IEDs out of the hands of the insur­gents whose indis­crim­i­nate use of IEDs endan­gers inno­cent Afghan civil­ians as well as Afghan and coali­tion forces.”

— Afghan and coali­tion forces cap­tured a Tal­iban impro­vised explo­sive device facil­i­ta­tor in the Behsud dis­trict of Nan­garhar province last night. The secu­ri­ty force tar­get­ed a com­pound out­side Jalal­abad in pur­suit of the facil­i­ta­tor and Afghan forces used a loud­speak­er to call for all occu­pants to peace­ful­ly exit the build­ings. After the occu­pants were inter­viewed, one of them led the secu­ri­ty force to a dif­fer­ent com­pound where he thought the tar­get­ed indi­vid­ual was resid­ing. Once the sec­ond com­pound was secure, the com­bined secu­ri­ty force detained the facil­i­ta­tor who peace­ful­ly sur­ren­dered and iden­ti­fied him­self to the secu­ri­ty force. No shots were fired and the women and chil­dren present were pro­tect­ed by the secu­ri­ty force.

— An Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty force detained two sus­pect­ed insur­gents in Ghazni province last night while in pur­suit of a Tal­iban sub­com­man­der who facil­i­tates weapons and pro­vides oper­a­tions sup­port for the Tal­iban in the area. The secu­ri­ty force went to a remote com­pound in Gelan dis­trict to search the area. Afghan forces used a loud­speak­er to call for the occu­pants to exit the build­ings and then cleared the com­pound. After the com­pound was secure, the secu­ri­ty force detained two sus­pect­ed insur­gents for fur­ther ques­tion­ing. No shots were fired and the women and chil­dren present were pro­tect­ed through­out the search.

— Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces last night struck at the Tal­iban lead­er­ship in Kan­da­har, cap­tur­ing a senior Tal­iban com­man­der and a mem­ber of the dis­trict mil­i­tary com­mis­sion in Nad ‘Ali, Hel­mand province, who com­mands the move­ment of insur­gent fight­ers and equip­ment through the Nad ‘Ali dis­trict. The joint secu­ri­ty force also detained anoth­er sus­pect­ed insur­gent in the same oper­a­tion. The joint secu­ri­ty force tar­get­ed a com­pound in Daman dis­trict on the out­skirts of Kan­da­har City. All of the res­i­dents com­plied with the instruc­tions of the joint secu­ri­ty force and peace­ful­ly exit­ed the com­pound. After inter­view­ing the res­i­dents, two sus­pect­ed insur­gents were detained for fur­ther ques­tion­ing includ­ing a senior Tal­iban leader and one addi­tion­al sus­pect­ed insur­gent. In July 21 Afghanistan news:

— Afghan Nation­al Secu­ri­ty Forces with Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force part­ners offi­cial­ly reopened a school that had been closed for 12 months due to facil­i­ties falling into dis­re­pair. Over the last two months, the com­bined force engaged local trades­men to build a new wall and met­al gates, a school yard, plant trees and bush­es, repair the exist­ing water pump, install new win­dows and build new chairs and bench­es for the stu­dents. The recon­struc­tion work now allows stu­dents to attend class­es four days a week. Pri­or to the offi­cial open­ing, Afghan offi­cials and local elders dis­trib­uted school sup­plies to the approx­i­mate­ly 200 stu­dents who attend the school each day. Extra school sup­plies have been giv­en to the school for the expect­ed 500 stu­dents who will attend the school in the future.

A local Afghan leader said, “It is mag­nif­i­cent that we are here today at the reopened school. Much has improved with the secu­ri­ty sit­u­a­tion to allow the school to reopen, and we are thank­ful of the Zab­ul Provin­cial Recon­struc­tion Team and Lithua­ni­ans for rebuild­ing the school.” Com­bined forces are com­mit­ted to assist­ing the gov­ern­ment of the Islam­ic Repub­lic of Afghanistan in rebuild­ing and repair­ing edu­ca­tion infra­struc­ture to edu­cate Afghanistan’s chil­dren.

In July 20 Afghanistan news:

— An Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty force killed sev­er­al insur­gents and cap­tured an impro­vised explo­sive device mak­er along with addi­tion­al sus­pect­ed insur­gents in Kun­duz province. The secu­ri­ty force went to the first of a series of tar­get­ed com­pounds in the vil­lage of Qareh Khani in the Cha­har Darah dis­trict in pur­suit of a Tal­iban sub-com­man­der who facil­i­tates weapons and orders IED and rock­et attacks against Afghan civil­ians and Afghan and coali­tion forces. Afghan forces used a loud­speak­er to call for all occu­pants to peace­ful­ly exit the tar­get­ed com­pounds.

One heav­i­ly armed indi­vid­ual ran out­side the com­pound and engaged the secu­ri­ty force. The com­bined force returned fire, killing the insur­gent. The com­bined force then moved to clear and secure the build­ing. While clear­ing the area, the secu­ri­ty force was engaged by an insur­gent bar­ri­cad­ed with­in one of the build­ings and anoth­er insur­gent in the court­yard. Return­ing fire, the assault force killed the insur­gents. After the com­pound was cleared and secured, the assault force detained the IED mak­er and an addi­tion­al sus­pect­ed insur­gent for fur­ther ques­tion­ing.

Evi­dence col­lect­ed at the scene direct­ly linked the IED mak­er to a pres­sure plate IED attack that occurred less than three kilo­me­ters from the tar­get­ed com­pound on April 14. Addi­tion­al­ly, sev­er­al oth­er IED relat­ed inci­dents have occurred in the imme­di­ate area over the last two years. IED mate­ri­als includ­ing blast­ing caps and wire were found at the com­pound.

“This is anoth­er key cap­ture toward ensur­ing the safe­ty of the inno­cent Afghan civil­ians resid­ing in Cha­har Darah dis­trict,” said Col. James Dawkins, ISAF Joint Com­mand Com­bined Joint Oper­a­tions Cen­ter direc­tor. “The Taliban’s indis­crim­i­nate use of such tac­tics has killed hun­dreds of inno­cent civil­ians just this year.”

At the sec­ond com­pound, two armed males ran from the build­ings into some thick veg­e­ta­tion. Afghan forces called for the indi­vid­u­als to peace­ful­ly sur­ren­der how­ev­er, they engaged the com­bined force and were sub­se­quent­ly killed. After the com­pound was cleared and secured, the secu­ri­ty force ques­tioned the remain­ing res­i­dents. One sus­pect­ed insur­gent was detained by the secu­ri­ty force for fur­ther ques­tion­ing. The women and chil­dren present were pro­tect­ed through­out the search­es.

Com­piled from Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force Joint Com­mand News Releas­es