WASHINGTON, April 26, 2010 — A senior militant commander in Afghanistan’s Kunduz province and two of his top advisors were killed in a precision air strike in northern Kunduz this morning, military officials reported.
The senior insurgents were driving through a rural desert area northeast of Kunduz City when they were struck by precision air fire.
The senior Taliban commander was involved in all aspects of insurgent operations in Kunduz province, officials said. He was responsible for setting target priorities, weapons distribution and directing attacks against coalition and Afghan forces.
In other recent operations in Afghanistan:
— In Kandahar province this morning, a combined Afghan-international security force detained several suspected insurgents for questioning.
— In Helmand province’s Nad-e Ali district yesterday, a combined patrol found an assault rifle, magazines, 130 rounds of ammunition and 30 pounds of homemade explosives.
— Coalition forces patrolling in the Dzadran district of Paktia province yesterday found 17 rocket-propelled grenades, nine fuses, four rear stabilizers and 300 heavy machine gun rounds. One individual was detained.
— An Afghan-international security force killed one militant and detained a few others as they pursued a Taliban leader in Kunduz the night of April 24. As the combined force approached a compound after intelligence reports of militant activity, they were confronted by an armed man, who was shot and killed.
— In Helmand on April 24, a combined force tried to stop a vehicle driven by the suspected militants. The driver didn’t comply and tried to escape. Shots were exchanged, and three insurgents were killed, including a Taliban commander responsible for assigning fighters and setting attack priorities in his area and involved in weapons delivery and battle-damage assessments after attacks on coalition forces. A search of the vehicle uncovered an automatic rifle and multiple grenades.
— Also on April 24, an Afghan civilian directed a combined patrol in Helmand’s Washer district to a cache containing 25 pounds of refined opium, an assault rifle, several magazines and a chest-bomb rig.
— In Helmand’s Nad-e Ali district April 24, an Afghan-international patrol found and destroyed five 60 mm mortar rounds.
— A combined Afghan-international security force captured a Taliban subcommander and a suspected insurgent and killed several other insurgents in Logar province April 24. As the assault force conducted a call-out, they were confronted by armed men, who were shot and killed. The Taliban subcommander, believed to be involved in planning suicide attacks, surrendered. A search of the area found several weapons, including an automatic rifle and pistols.
— In Kunduz’s Archi district the night of April 23, a combined Afghan-international security force was engaged with small-arms fire. The combined force returned fire, killing several insurgents and detaining a few others. Two of those killed were Taliban commanders, one of them being the target of the raid, who was responsible for distributing insurgent funds, designating targets and planning bombings. Though women and children were in the compound buildings, none were injured during the operation. The homeowner told the patrol the Taliban had forced their way into the compound for the night. International forces will reimburse the homeowner for minor damage to his property. A search of the buildings yielded automatic rifles, a machine gun, a rocket-propelled grenade, hand grenades and other weapons.
— In Khost province April 24, a combined force detained a suspected insurgent while hunting for a Haqqani terrorist network commander.
— In Helmand’s Nad-e Ali district April 24, a combined patrol found two shotguns, 40 pounds of opium, small-arms ammunition and various electrical components, as well as another cache consisting of two pressure plate initiation devices 40 pounds of homemade explosives.
— One militant was killed and several others captured by an Afghan-international security force pursuing a Taliban facilitator in Ghazni province the night of April 22. As the force approached the targeted compound, several men ran away. One insurgent moved toward the security force in a hostile manner and was shot and killed. Several other suspected insurgents were captured.
— Also on the night of April 22, a combined force in Khost’s Terezai district captured a Haqqani network bombing-attack facilitator and another suspected insurgent. Ammonium nitrate, aluminum powder and rifles were found on site.
— In Kunduz province’s Chahar Darah district the night of April 22, a combined security force detained a suspected insurgent for questioning. An armed man ran from the compound and later fired on the security force. He was shot and killed.
— In Nangarhar province’s Khogyani district the night of April 22, a combined force captured a Taliban subcommander responsible for directing roadside-bomb and rocket-propelled grenade attacks on coalition forces, along with another suspected insurgent.
— The same night in Helmand’s Reg-e Khan Neshin district, a combined force found a roadside bomb, three roadside-bomb power sources, five spools of copper wire, an intelligence radio, two assault rifles with ammunition, brass knuckles and 88 pounds of raw opium. After coordination with the village elder, the combined force detained more than 20 men in the compound.
— In Helmand’s Garm Ser district that night, an Afghan-international patrol acting on a tip from an Afghan civilian found 50 chest rigs and 19 magazines.
— A combined patrol found nine grenades, four rocket-propelled grenades, small-arms ammunition, homemade explosives, a timer and detonation cord in the Chorah district of Uruzgan province April 22.
–– A combined security force in Logar province’s Pul-e Alam district killed five insurgents the night of April 22 after receiving sustained heavy gunfire from a compound. A search yielded multiple automatic rifles, armor-piercing rounds, bomb-making materials and blasting caps. A Taliban suicide attack commander with ties to the Haqqani network was killed in the firefight, along with four other insurgents.
Two U.S. servicemembers died of wounds suffered in the firefight.
No civilians were reported harmed in these operations, officials said.
U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)