Afghanistan Airstrike Kills 4 Insurgents

WASHINGTON, Sept. 29, 2010 — An air weapons team engaged insur­gents who’d fired on Afghan and coali­tion forces con­duct­ing a patrol in east­ern Afghanistan today, mil­i­tary offi­cials report­ed.

The com­bined patrol came under effec­tive small-arms fire from about eight insur­gents in the Andar dis­trict of Ghazni province. After gain­ing pos­i­tive iden­ti­fi­ca­tion on the insur­gent posi­tion, an air weapons team engaged the insur­gent fir­ing posi­tion. After the engage­ment end­ed, the com­bined force called for a med­ical evac­u­a­tion for wound­ed insur­gents and report­ed that approx­i­mate­ly four insur­gents had been killed.

The wound­ed were evac­u­at­ed to an Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force med­ical facil­i­ty for treat­ment. ISAF is aware of alle­ga­tions in the media of civil­ian casu­al­ties asso­ci­at­ed with this oper­a­tion. ISAF is receiv­ing reports from this oper­a­tion and will pro­vide updates as they become avail­able.

In oth­er news and oper­a­tions today:

— Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces engaged sev­er­al insur­gents dur­ing a com­bined oper­a­tion in Ghazni province. The com­bined force came under fire from a group of armed insur­gents, who left the area when the com­bined force returned fire. As the force moved to the sus­pect­ed insur­gent loca­tion, they dis­cov­ered a cave and while search­ing the cave they were engaged by insur­gents. The patrol returned fire, killing two insur­gents. Ini­tial reports indi­cate no civil­ians were involved in the oper­a­tion.

In yesterday’s Afghanistan news and oper­a­tions:

— An insur­gent sui­cide bomber attacked and killed the Deputy Gov­er­nor of Ghazni province, Moham­mad Kaz­im Allah­yar, his two sons and three of his nephews. Deputy Gov­er­nor Allah­yar had served as deputy provin­cial gov­er­nor for more than sev­en years. “We join Pres­i­dent Karzai in con­demn­ing this attack against Deputy Gov­er­nor Allah­yar and his fam­i­ly,” said Rear Admi­ral Greg Smith, direc­tor of com­mu­ni­ca­tion, Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force. “Deputy Gov­er­nor Allah­yar was a ded­i­cat­ed pub­lic ser­vant who was work­ing to improve the lives of the peo­ple in Ghazni. As both Pres­i­dent Karzai and Biz­mul­lah Khan, Min­is­ter of the Inte­ri­or, com­ment­ed yes­ter­day, these attacks by insur­gents on Afghan offi­cials and inno­cent civil­ians are un-Islam­ic and inhu­mane. We offer our sin­cere con­do­lences and sym­pa­thy to the fam­i­ly of Deputy Gov­er­nor Allah­yar and to the peo­ple of Ghazni,” said Admi­ral Smith. “We remain res­olute and will stand by our Afghan part­ners to bring about peace and secu­ri­ty.” Afghan author­i­ties are work­ing to bring the per­pe­tra­tors of this attack to jus­tice. There were no ISAF ser­vice­mem­bers involved in the inci­dent.

— A group of Afghan chil­dren found an unex­plod­ed rock­et and took it to an Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force oper­at­ing base in west­ern Afghanistan. The chil­dren turned the ord­nance, a 107 mm rock­et, over to troops at For­ward Operaing Base Leim­bach in Farah province for dis­pos­al. An ISAF explo­sive ord­nance dis­pos­al team destroyed the rock­et. “While we are hap­py to have safe­ly destroyed this weapon, we encour­age peo­ple who find any device like this to noti­fy an ISAF ser­vice­mem­ber and not attempt to pick it up,” said Ital­ian Army Col. Fran­co Fed­eri­ci, Ital­ian Task Force com­man­der. “Rock­ets and oth­er weapons are very dan­ger­ous and we will remove them safe­ly.”

— Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces cap­tured a Tal­iban leader heav­i­ly involved in impro­vised explo­sive device attacks, in Pak­tiya province. The indi­vid­ual is known to con­duct pres­sure plate, remote-con­trolled and com­mand-wire IED attacks, endan­ger­ing the local pop­u­la­tion. He was also involved in attacks on recon­struc­tion oper­a­tions and the assas­si­na­tions of Afghan gov­ern­ment offi­cials. “This was a key cap­ture for Afghan and coali­tion forces as well as Afghan civil­ians liv­ing in Pak­tiya province,” said U.S. Army Col. Rafael Tor­res, Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force Joint Com­mand Com­bined Joint Oper­a­tions Cen­ter direc­tor. “This leader haunt­ed the Afghan peo­ple with his indis­crim­i­nate and vio­lent activ­i­ties. We’re hap­py to remove him from the bat­tle­field.” Intel­li­gence reports led the secu­ri­ty force to a remote com­pound in Gardez dis­trict to search for the tar­get­ed indi­vid­ual. Afghan forces used a loud­speak­er to call for all occu­pants to exit the build­ings peace­ful­ly and then the joint secu­ri­ty force cleared and secured the area. After ini­tial ques­tion­ing at the scene, the secu­ri­ty force iden­ti­fied and detained the leader along with one of his asso­ciates. The secu­ri­ty force also dis­cov­ered an 82mm artillery round and ammu­ni­tion at the scene. The assault force did not fire their weapons and they pro­tect­ed the women and chil­dren for the dura­tion of the search.

— The Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force con­firmed that a Sept. 25 pre­ci­sion air strike in Kunar province killed Abdal­lah Umar al-Qurayshi, an al-Qai­da senior com­man­der who coor­di­nat­ed the attacks of a group of Arab fight­ers in Kunar and Nuris­tan provinces. The al-Qai­da facil­i­ta­tors and extrem­ists he worked with through­out the Mid­dle East direct­ly threat­en the safe­ty and secu­ri­ty of Afghan civil­ians. He rou­tine­ly facil­i­tat­ed the trav­el of for­eign fight­ers, includ­ing Arabs, into the region. Abu Atta al Kuwaiti, an al-Qai­da explo­sives expert, and sev­er­al Ara­bic for­eign fight­ers also were killed in the strike. ISAF is work­ing to con­firm the exact iden­ti­ties of oth­er high-lev­el insur­gent com­man­ders, who were meet­ing when the strike was con­duct­ed. “The death of Abdal­lah Umar al-Qurayshi is a sig­nif­i­cant vic­to­ry for the peo­ple of Afghanistan,” said U.S. Army Col. Rafael Tor­res, ISAF Joint Com­mand Com­bined Joint Oper­a­tions Cen­ter direc­tor. “We delib­er­ate­ly tar­get­ed a major threat to Afghanistan, which will sig­nif­i­cant­ly degrade the al-Qai­da activ­i­ties through­out the region. We will relent­less­ly tar­get the remain­ing for­eign fight­ers, al-Qai­da, and senior Tal­iban lead­er­ship still oper­at­ing in Afghanistan and those who har­bor them.”

— Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces detained two insur­gents in Kan­da­har province includ­ing a Tal­iban leader who con­duct­ed impro­vised explo­sive device attacks in Kan­da­har City. The leader also facil­i­tat­ed the move­ment of IED mate­r­i­al through­out the city. Based on intel­li­gence tips, the secu­ri­ty force tar­get­ed a com­pound in Kan­da­har City to search for the tar­get­ed indi­vid­ual. Dur­ing the clear­ance, one indi­vid­ual threat­ened the secu­ri­ty force with an AK-47. The secu­ri­ty force engaged the threat­en­ing indi­vid­ual, killing him. After the area was secure, the secu­ri­ty force con­duct­ed ini­tial ques­tion­ing at the scene, iden­ti­fy­ing and detain­ing the leader and one of his asso­ciates. The assault force pro­tect­ed the women and chil­dren for the dura­tion of the search.

— Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces detained sev­er­al sus­pect­ed insur­gents in Hel­mand province while in pur­suit of a Nawa-ye Barakzai Tal­iban Shu­ra mem­ber and Tal­iban leader with influ­ence through­out the Nawa and Lashkar Gah dis­tricts. Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces have degrad­ed the Nawah Tal­iban net­work through recent oper­a­tions result­ing in the cap­ture of sev­er­al high-lev­el com­man­ders with­in the net­work. Intel­li­gence reports led the secu­ri­ty force to a remote com­pound in Nawa-ye Barakzai dis­trict to search for the tar­get­ed indi­vid­ual. Afghan forces used a loud­speak­er to call for all occu­pants to exit the build­ings peace­ful­ly and then the joint secu­ri­ty force cleared and secured the area. After ini­tial ques­tion­ing at the scene, the secu­ri­ty force detained four sus­pect­ed insur­gents. The secu­ri­ty force also found impro­vised explo­sive device mate­r­i­al and Tal­iban pro­pa­gan­da at the scene. The assault force did not fire their weapons and they pro­tect­ed the women and chil­dren for the dura­tion of the search.

— Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces detained sev­er­al insur­gents in Khost province, includ­ing a Haqqani Net­work leader respon­si­ble for attacks against coali­tion forces. The leader was detained by coali­tion forces pre­vi­ous­ly and spent a year in cus­tody before being released in April 2009, when he resumed his ille­gal activ­i­ties. Intel­li­gence reports led the secu­ri­ty force to a com­pound east of Gul­dar in Bak dis­trict to search for the tar­get­ed indi­vid­ual. Afghan forces used a loud­speak­er to call for all occu­pants to exit the build­ings peace­ful­ly and then the joint secu­ri­ty force cleared and secured the area. After ini­tial ques­tion­ing at the scene, the secu­ri­ty force iden­ti­fied and detained the leader along with two of his asso­ciates. The secu­ri­ty force also dis­cov­ered mul­ti­ple auto­mat­ic weapons and rifles, a machine gun, mag­a­zines and mil­i­tary uni­forms at the scene. The assault force did not fire their weapons and they pro­tect­ed the women and chil­dren for the dura­tion of the search.

— Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces detained sev­er­al insur­gents in Kan­da­har province while in pur­suit of a Tal­iban senior leader oper­at­ing in the Kan­da­har City and Pan­jwa’i dis­tricts. The tar­get leads small groups of fight­ers in their attacks against coali­tion forces. Intel­li­gence reports led the secu­ri­ty force to a remote com­pound south­west of Kan­da­har City to search for the leader. Afghan forces used a loud­speak­er to call for all occu­pants to exit the build­ings peace­ful­ly and then the joint secu­ri­ty force cleared and secured the area. After ini­tial ques­tion­ing at the scene, the secu­ri­ty force detained sev­er­al insur­gents. The secu­ri­ty force also dis­cov­ered impro­vised explo­sive device mak­ing mate­r­i­al includ­ing 70 pounds of nitro­gen fer­til­iz­er, often used to make explo­sives and cop­per wire at the scene. The assault force did not fire their weapons and they pro­tect­ed the women and chil­dren dur­ing the search.

In Sept. 27 Afghanistan oper­a­tions:

— Act­ing on mul­ti­ple intel­li­gence reports and tips from con­cerned cit­i­zens, Afghan and coali­tion secu­ri­ty forces detained a want­ed insur­gent dur­ing a com­bined oper­a­tion in the vil­lage of Mul­lah Hadzrat in Log­ar province. The cap­tured insur­gent com­man­der was an expert in the man­u­fac­tur­ing and use of impro­vised explo­sive devices. He was direct­ly respon­si­ble for the plan­ning and exe­cu­tion of numer­ous IED attacks against Afghan forces and ISAF troops. He was also an expert in the use of remote-con­trol tech­nolo­gies to ini­ti­ate IEDs. Upon secur­ing the com­pound, the force called-out the inhab­i­tants mul­ti­ple times in order to allow them to peace­ful­ly exit the build­ing. There was no response. The com­bined force then entered the com­pound and with­out inci­dent detained the insur­gent com­man­der and sev­er­al sus­pect­ed insur­gents. The detainees were tak­en for pro­cess­ing and fur­ther ques­tion­ing.

Source:
Com­piled from Inter­na­tion­al Secu­ri­ty Assis­tance Force Joint Com­mand News Releas­es

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