KABUL, April 28, 2010 – Afghan and international forces detained numerous suspected insurgents and seized illegal drugs and weapons in recent operations in Afghanistan, military officials reported.
A combined Afghan-international security force pursuing a Taliban commander in Helmand province last night detained several suspects west of Marja after intelligence information indicated militant activity in a rural area. During a search of two compounds, the security force uncovered multiple rifles, a shotgun and about 200 pounds of heroin.
Also in Helmand last night, a combined force searching a compound in a rural area north of Marja captured a Taliban leader believed to be responsible for a local intimidation campaign and ordering attacks on coalition forces. Several other suspected insurgents also were detained, and the security force also found more than 200 pounds of heroin.
The narcotics trade funds and supports the insurgency and constitutes a direct threat to Afghanistan, International Security Assistance Force officials said.
In Ghazni province last night, an Afghan-international force detained two suspected insurgents for further questioning after investigating intelligence reports of militant activity.
A combined patrol in Helmand’s Now Zad district searched a compound after being fired upon and found 300 to 400 spent small-arms casings and four bags of opium weighing 15 to 20 pounds each. A few suspected insurgents were detained for questioning.
In Helmand’s Garm Ser district yesterday, an Afghan-international patrol found 80 pounds of ammonium nitrate in an abandoned building. The Afghan government has banned use of the fertilizer because it can be used to make explosives.
In Badghis province’s Murgab district yesterday, an ISAF patrol found a homemade bomb consisting of 30 40 mm grenades.
Afghan forces in Kabul yesterday found four 107 mm rockets. Also in Kabul, workers digging the foundation for a new mosque found two rockets and air defense ammunition.
Kabul police found a cache containing 61 rocket-propelled grenades April 26.
No shots were fired and no Afghan civilians were harmed during these operations, officials said.
U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)