American Forces Press Service
Jan. 22, 2008 - Coalition forces detained seven suspected insurgents during anti-Taliban operations yesterday in Afghanistan's Zabul province, military officials said. Coalition forces had searched several compounds in the Qalat district, targeting insurgents with ties to Taliban and foreign-fighter networks. Coalition forces found and detained seven individuals, including one self-confessed Taliban operative. Two weapons were confiscated.
"Coalition forces remain focused on degrading extremist networks in order to help promote peace and stability in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan," said Army Maj. Chris Belcher, a Combined Joint Task Force 82 spokesman.
In Jan. 20 Afghanistan operations:
-- Afghan national police, accompanied by coalition advisors, discovered and destroyed an unexploded anti-personnel mine located near an elementary school in Chamkani village in Paktya province. Engineers said the device was an old Soviet-era anti-personnel mine, buried about 2 feet below the surface.
-- Afghan soldiers accompanied by coalition advisors stopped two potential insurgent attacks in Helmand province. Near the village of Tambah, in Narh-e Saraj district, a suspected insurgent was seen placing an improvised explosive device on a frequently traveled roadway. Afghan soldiers called in coalition aircraft to destroy the bomb.
-- Just north of Tambah in the same district, Afghan soldiers called in another coalition air strike to eliminate an insurgent observation post. Tambah is known for insurgent activity. Afghan and coalition forces found several 105 mm and 82 mm shell casings, bomb-making materials, and a cache of drugs. "Hiding weapons and drugs in civilian areas is a continuing tactic used by insurgents placing innocent civilians in danger," Belcher said.
In other recent Afghanistan operations:
-- Afghan and coalition forces detained five suspected insurgents during anti-Taliban operations in the Qalat district in Zabul province Jan. 18. One of the detainees identified himself as a Zabul-area Taliban commander.
-- Afghan citizens provided information leading to the Jan. 16 recovery of a suspected insurgent weapons cache in Nangarhar province, near the border with Pakistan. The cache, found in Zawa village in the Khogyani district, contained 93 recoilless-rifle rounds.
(Compiled from Combined Joint Task Force 82 news releases.)